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Reach
« on: November 11, 2013, 01:03:02 am »
He was not himself. In the thinning rags and then scents of the things that others expelled from themselves and their homes, he was not. A moving slumber; in the shadows that morning cut and the blanket of stars later. His body stayed in the rich areas. Affluence of people, not metal, or lately, numbers in computers. Affinity to the human beast like the human beast was drawn to bovine and poultry and sweet water. Officers could move him, never peering underneath the holes of his hood, he would comply, and others like him could pretend to converse, he would grunt in response. But every part of him that was him was resting, strung up in a comfortable stasis because the world couldn't draw him in any direction anymore, only support his existence. He still ate from the blind spots in world surveillance, sometimes the meat was rotten and the blood was hard - but he didn't feast. There was no course worth engaging his palled.

And then the sleep ended.

Miriam could taste the sun, a brave streak falling through the rips of the cloth veiling his head, to lay patiently on his man-eating lips until he breathed. A new age with strength to quicken him from the small rebellion of absence. It was an eager age, greedy to let itself be known; toxic, inventive, free and constrictive. So he stood up and became aware of the weeds, drying in the same sun, and patterns of rust spelling out the vintage of the box that held fresh garbage. Hands came off their automated state to tug at the cover for his head, until the spent garment came down like - what would would be a likeness appropriate for this era, that he could relate to himself? - bought, confused soldiers.

The fast undone hood soon revealed a smiling face, untouched by the distance from today and the time he had laid down. Excitement lifted the skin from the bones, to have his details be svelte but not starved, like his old self. Hair was also beneath the hood. It was the only wealth that he had left, spilling sinfully down and coiling luxuriously inside his clothes, tumbling like one shadow from his scalp. Then, suddenly, he was not so glorious, the magic of glee receding into his bones and leaving him the result of his protest by stillness.

He took a drink from boy that fled from him, but chose an empty path, and then a woman who thought he was beautiful in the boy's clothes. With his sharp eyebrows and his deceptively large mouth she was right. The two meals meals made him more so, putting blush where there had been bruises and arctic life around his pupils instead of gray, muddy waters. Miriam was burning underneath Jacob's clothes. The boy and Amanda were dancing in his veins. The warmer he became - and his kind was warm, warmer than a mother, warmer than love - the more he felt it.

In sneakers that were well worn - no socks, that'd be too intimate to steal so soon - he made his way through the concrete world, and got acquainted with mannerisms through observing meetings between strangers, friends, and then family. It seemed the freedom of this world made things hard for its children, leaving them little protocol to stand on. He thought it was a wonderful idea, though. In his new hood, bright red, and a pair of sheers in its pocket - a tool he'd always liked - Miriam slowly soaked up the social changes on his way toward his favorite blood.

It was a good Tuesday, that he'd decided to wake, hours after lunch. Oh, this line had been so interesting last time, not just delicious. It was their fault that he'd been so disappointed, when their fountain ran stagnant. A generational sweetness, he'd deducted, and decided to wait. Now the stream was bubbling again, and his soul was receptive. Three times he'd courted this family. He wondered if his involvement had become a story that trickled down. It didn't matter. Miriam would walk in through their measures, he wouldn't be a very good touch of death if he couldn't recognize and fool surveillance when he saw it, and see about her.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #1 on: November 11, 2013, 01:30:38 am »
‘Once upon a time, we….’


Royal we. It rang in the head of the pretty blonde since she was dressing up as Queens, never princesses. Of course, in this world of skyscrapers and computers, there was no real royalty anymore. Power did not come from luck of birth, but from money, intelligence, contacts, and ruthless ambition. That, and a bit of luck, of course.

It made the game exciting and frustrating.

Legs crossed at the knees, the prim and proper black business suit hardly to her liking. Color stood out at the heels, brilliant red, like her lips, and like the two pins that kept her hair up in a bun. A lock still remained free, corkscrewed besides her cheek as she tried not to let her frustration show.
‘I swear you are the most verbose fool I’ve had the displeasure of knowing.’ She had to shut her eyes to keep from getting a headache. She had been here for hours now, listening as there was argument over the bill she’d put forward a couple of days before. ‘The only reason you’re wasting your time is because we’re from opposite parties. You know this is a good idea.’

There was too much money being wasted on the military, considering they were not at war. Her proposal was a new plan for next year’s budget, increasing the spending areas of welfare, education, and medicine, while cutting the military budget. Yet, this fool rambled on and on about how prepared they needed to be.
‘We could destroy the world ten times over.’ And how tempting that was now just to shut him up. He was probably related to cockroaches though.

That thought made her smile. And then it made her laugh.

“Miss Devi,”
pretty blue eyes opened to look up innocently at the speaker. “Does the thought of terrorists amuse you so?”

“No, not at all,”
she had to bite her lips to keep from making a nuclear comment. The urge passed quickly. “Please, continue, Paul. We’re all very concerned about terrorist attacks and you are making excellent points.” ‘Go die in a ditch.’

“Thank you,”
and so the verbose man continued. She examined her nails. She thought of how she’d ever succeed when most of the politicians here refused to see outside of party lines. The majority were of his party. Eventually, they were called into a recess, with plans to resume ‘soon’. She knew they’d put it off as long as they could, and the thought irked her, but she still left them all with that pleasant smile on her lips, and made her way back to her hotel room.

Her purse was thrown on the bed once she entered it. The door was shut by another who did not enter, one of her many guards. All politicians had their guards, and she was no exception. This hotel was not one of those hosting the politicians, though.
“So paranoid about terrorists and yet you all group together in one place.” One bomb, and they’d all be dead. So simple, so easy.

No.

She had other places to be, a promised meeting with a corporation that supported her plans with this bill. One of the cancer researching groups. Much as she did not like the thought of them using money they received, money that should be going to just that research, she rationalized it by thinking how much more money they’d receive if her proposal passed.

It was to be something of a gala. She was there as a guest, among others who were of like mind. All, potential allies.


“How long now?”
She spoke aloud as she glanced at the clock. It was 6 now. It began at 8. Off went the business suit. The red dress was laid over the bed, along with accessories, before the woman stripped and hopped in the shower to cleanse herself of Paul’s slime. This gala would help secure her position. If the bill passed, she’d be in an even better position to run for higher office, and that was coming up soon. 

‘…and we will have our happily ever after.’
« Last Edit: November 11, 2013, 01:35:16 am by Krystal Itzume »

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Re: Reach
« Reply #2 on: November 11, 2013, 01:49:29 pm »
Miriam saw what was staff and what wasn't. The uniform helped, but their attitude, and lack of entitlement and comfort cemented it. The front desk had its clean people, they were smiling despite themselves, just like servants of any age. When they asked if they could help him, he realized he didn't even know her name. Ah but if it was the same blood, perhaps vanity had preserved something else for him, as well. "I am here for the Devi lady. We're old friends." The man turned to the screen, hair thick and shining with fat, and touched the surface and said a number.

Miriam's neck expertly bent and turned to keep his face discretely out of the eyes of the cameras. What useless paranoia. Their tools of war had long since surpassed their deterrents. The elevator was pleasant, sturdy. Miriam had enough wits to press the first number on the sequence he'd been given. Three other people in this room, all of them with raised pulse for the little time they had to wait, as though this wasn't fast enough. A smile on him then.

Stepping off, he could well assume which room he would have to breach. The guards didn't wear armor, but their single minded attitude - one that was projected with barely hidden hostility - gave them away as what they were. The Devi had traveled like this in many of their incarnations. He noted that he liked the red of this corridor before he followed a woman with a trolley when she opened a door in the right wall, where the guards had clustered, further down.

She looked annoyed when she turned around. The mechanism that she had unlocked clicked closed behind him just as she discovered the pleasant line of his nose, and the vibrating qualities in the purples and blues threaded inside his eyes. This world's skepticism cloaked him all too well. A superstitious woman would have known to be afraid. "That key." he said, and she reached inside her apron to protect it. She wanted to barter, her smirk said.

"Can I help you, sir?" she asked. Miriam gave his attention left and right before he stepped closer. It excited her. Her dress fit the blue of the floor and her apron was almost the same white as the sheets. Well paired. "I'm not allowed to give this out to anyone." Endearing, ransoming with something that was essentially a reward. He shook his head when the desk stopped her from backing further, and he could catch up. She mistook his determination for something else, of course. When she'd climbed to sit and surrounded his hips with her knees, he held her cheek and she held the boys shirt.

"You're generous, aren't you?" he asked. After she had nodded and her spine stretched to touch her lips to his, he pushed her head to the side swiftly, concussing her. She slept on the table when he took the flat key and left her where she was. The rest was a matter of room-hopping through their conjoined doors until he reached the second to last chambers. One guard fast dispatched in the same manner. Her scents were welcoming, when he entered.

He sat beside the dress, with her jacket in his lap. He'd smelt the collar, as though it needed verification. Miriam could sense his own pulse dance to the rhythm of the rays that pelted her. Their relationship was not in such a good state yet that he could join her. He laughed, delighted at the scenario and waited. How did the Devi of this generation look?

"It's a pretty color." he said when she stepped out, eventually. His fingers flitted to pet the dress, waist first, until it traced the cleavage. "Are you going somewhere?" Legs crossed as he leaned back, supporting himself on his hands. "May I come?"

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Re: Reach
« Reply #3 on: November 11, 2013, 02:20:40 pm »
The water was near scalding as it ran over her flesh, blocking out sound and thought. Baptism by fire wasn’t possible, but this was close. The woman felt much calmer after indulging, just a little. This was no time for candles and bubbles, after all.

Oh, but she did not like how the cold came over her when she stepped out of the shower and dripped onto the floor. She reached for the towel and brought it first to her face, before beginning the process of drying the rest of her skin while stepping out of the bathroom. She did not consider there would be reason for modesty until she was out the door and someone spoke.

Of course she was surprised and her first glance, wide-eyes, betrayed that. However, there was no scream, and there was no shout. Her actions were deceptively calm instead as she straightened up, towel held in one hand. Questions swirled about where her guards were in all this, with the understanding that, very likely, they would be of no help to her right now.

Her calm did not hide her anger well. Her lips were a tight line and her eyes were hard on him. Still, her hands moved to wrap the towel around what was already seen, covering her body from breast to thigh. She answered automatically,
“No.” Not that he was unappealing. Miss Devi imagined he could clean up better than his present state and put most men to shame with his well-kept length of hair and svelte form. Good eye candy, which was something she lacked. No ‘Mr. Devi’—and it would be Mr. Devi, thank you very much. How the press did like to notice that, too.

It was the unknown status of him. Unknowns were dangerous, in more than one way.

There was the obvious reason, as well. He had broken into her hotel. She had no idea his intentions, but she doubted they were anything good.

One painted nail pointed to the exit, silver tipped gold.
“Get out or I will fetch security.” Never mind that she would likely have to do so in a towel, since he was much closer to the phone.

Belatedly, she realized she was between him and main door out into the hallway, as well.

« Last Edit: November 11, 2013, 02:22:12 pm by Krystal Itzume »

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Re: Reach
« Reply #4 on: November 11, 2013, 09:48:44 pm »
It was a treat to see her. He liked honesty in his interactions, and the way her blue eyes flared with realization was quite delicious. Water drops littered her skin, futilely trying to provide cover among the goosebumps that the cold inflicted on her mortal complexion. Her posture recovered fast, modesty protected in a controlled roll of the cloth. He was interested in the flesh, of course, but he'd awoken for the blood. She was solving problems, silently. His eyes narrowed in response, playfully imitating her. Surely all of the answers couldn't be disclosed, inside those guessing blues, no matter her powers of deduction.

"No?" he echoed and stroked the jacket that laid on his thighs, as though her word had upset it. "Well, I suppose I should be grateful for your composure." Palm to the ceiling as his fingers unfolded in her direction. "Congratulations by the way, on your splendid-- health." Then her iron finger, tinted in gold, and her rejection. He removed the jacket from himself as he stood. Ancient as he may be, he drew a tall silhouette. Luckily the boy had liked his clothes larger.

The violet thrummed with the azure in his gaze as the rest of him was still. "My name is Miriam, Devi Daughter." he explained before he looked over his shoulder at the door for a short instance. "And I don't think I shall go just yet." She would find him at arms length. This blood did come with good features. Perhaps he was biased. Affection through familiarity. "We've met before." to his own belief. After all, he wouldn't come if it wasn't this soul that resurfaced. "Long time ago."

The room was temporary; the guards, the blooden dress - always so industrious. A smile for her, lips closed. The guards, she mentioned. "To what end? I've come this far undetected. I am not here to do you harm." This could be debated. "And if I was." An intrigued tone of voice as he looked her over, damp and lovely, as though considering  his harm-alternative. "They couldn't stop me before the damage was done." Miriam reached for her then, his arm more than capable of bridging the distance. He'd hook into the towel, free her of it swiftly. With all certainty, she wouldn't let that happen. She would have to step away, or stop him somehow.

"I'm not here for myself this time. I'm here to offer you something." It was a good ice-breaker, his services. In the past she had always taken his help. Ambition should long since have been a sin of its own. "Anything. I am sure you can use my services." He locked his hands behind his back and leaned closer. So this was what cleanliness in this century smelt like. As always, signature fragrances were better. His head fell to the side and his hair started to spill off his shoulder, until the lengths inside the jacket were engaged, and the tumble seemed endless until it had coiled several times by their feet. He looked down, feigning embarrassment before he took her eyes again. "You have troubles, yes? Everyone does. Let me prove myself."

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Re: Reach
« Reply #5 on: November 12, 2013, 12:10:17 am »
This was not how interactions went. The Devi daughter observed as he spoke from a script she’d never been handed. She had anticipated he would not be so easy to get rid of—one didn’t get by guards and into a room only to be dismissed with words. He claimed they’d met, and she canted her head as half of her lips curved up in that questioning, disbelieving grin. They’d never met. She was good with faces.

His claim was half-believed. No, not harm, at least not immediately—though he was going to annoy. It was a quick step that put her just out of the reach of his hand and kept the towel around herself. She shot him a glare for the reach. He countered it with pretty words about having something to give.

Well, she was never one to ignore an offer. Her eyes had a hungry gleam she never took note of. Vague words, broad promises. Anything.
‘Anything?’ Bribes, she understood. This was a script she knew better. He leaned forward, and she leaned away.

Hair tumbled. He could have been the male Rapunzel. It needed to be braided, if not cut. He wanted to prove himself. He said anything. He offered no catch but she wasn’t foolish. There were stories in the Devi family, stories that led to her thinking her proper place was in politics. They spoke interchangeably of an angel or a devil. The Devi were ‘special’ enough to catch such attention—what little girl wouldn’t like to believe themselves special?

Only now she was a woman, and knew ‘special’ still had to pay.
“You’re getting something out of this bargain,” coy smile, “Go on and say it. Then I’ll see if I want to risk putting you to the test.”

And what test? Her mind immediately drew up her annoyances. Wouldn’t it be nice if they could fall ill, so she wouldn’t have to endure any more filibusters. Wouldn’t it be nice if they could be bribed. Some one way, some the other. If all were sick it’d be much too suspicious. If all were bribed…well actually, that was normal.

« Last Edit: November 12, 2013, 12:20:02 am by Krystal Itzume »

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Re: Reach
« Reply #6 on: November 12, 2013, 02:43:02 am »
It had been a pretty maneuver, out of his reach. She wore that towel like armor, then. The words he spoke were getting through, got considered, digested. She didn't cling long to what they offered until he presented what might be her winning in all this. It amused him greatly, that expression. He could feel being weighed then, so that she may know his worth, the benefits of his business. She had seen it as such, too. A transaction, despite his promise.

So she put it to him. What was his prize? A merchant then? Big guards, big rooms, with greasy haired boys downstairs, touching screens. Did trade pay this well in this day and age? No. Not her, with her nectar underneath her skin. Greed wasn't it, he'd deducted earlier. Ambition, he'd said. "I like the way you smile, Devi, when you agree to test me." He liked that she wasn't rattled, also. She was looking the gift horse in the mouth, perhaps, but she was not chasing it on its way.

A hand that had played and pushed the pleasure out of people - albeit far less times than it had been their demise - sheathed into the pocket of the red jacket he wore. With his eyes he asked what she thought a stranger might have in his cargo, if he could so easily step around the shield of men and flat keyholes she'd surrounded herself with. "Oh, you caught me." Theatrical hollow in his throat, to make the voice remarkable. He had to flatter and entertain her.

And out of that sheath, he produced the sheers he'd acquired. He held them out, loops first. The gesture was threatening enough on it own without the sharp ends. "Perhaps you could tend to my hair for me. I am not all that familiar with the current fashions." His attention flitted fast over her form, as the towel darkened on her, drinking up the water. "Right now it seems rather-- bare." He could also grin. It was necessary she saw his enamel weapons. "This will buy you your first taste at what I might do." He was fond of his blackened strands, of course, but he'd sooner look appropriate than fantastic. Perhaps she could find a way to marry its length and todays appearances, somehow.

"But I'll admit." He saw her collarbones, he saw her throat. "My endgame is inside you." Lovely implications. What would that make her, if she paid with the flesh around the blood? He'd gladly sample. He'd had such friendships with this blood, before. Ah, but he had to be earnest. He could be faulted for being lost in insinuation often. "Life. Red like your dress. Hot like your ambition. Would you believe it, that I am a monster like that, looking to be your partner?" He lifted and lowered the scissors for her to take, again. "I want your blood." That was as plain as he could be, wasn't it?

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Re: Reach
« Reply #7 on: November 12, 2013, 03:22:23 am »
Smile became a smirk. How long would he like her grins when the tests came? How long until he hated their implications? She did not consider herself bad, but one did get tired of being tested. She observed his movements, and felt herself tense as the shears were brought into sight. The blood rushed to fuel adrenaline if it were necessary, if he intended to use those on her.

Unnecessary, it seemed. He asked about the hair, explained a lack of knowledge.
‘Clearly.’ But how could he grow his hair so long and be so ignorant of the times. It must have taken plenty of time to grow such hair. Smirk wavered. “The trends can be,” some women wore less than this towel in public and thought it appropriate. She was not one of those women. Backless gowns, deep plunges, slits in skirts—she implied but didn’t tell. At least, when she got a say in the matter of what strangers saw of her.

He implied, too, teased her with how she could ‘buy’ a taste of what he’d do. She flushed, cheeks and body, as he continued to speak.
‘Well, if that’s all.’ Ambition was a deadly disease, and she mentally slapped herself for the thought, after her eyes completed a once-over of Miriam-Rapunzel.

She had the assets to use herself as a weapon to get what she wanted, but she liked to act superior and not use them, the same way countries with nuclear weapons didn’t use those aces.

Miriam didn’t let her dwell long on that.
“Blood?” She repeated, amused. Confused. Did he mean life by it, or literally, blood? She took the scissors before they could be taken out of her reach, pulling them from his fingers and bringing them closer to her. Yes, he meant it literally. He’d called himself a monster. ‘Vampire.’ If he wanted to play at that. “What an odd request.” What was a bit of blood for what she wanted?

For such an odd request, she took it in stride, as if she'd heard stranger things. She hadn't. She didn't fully buy this line he was selling.
“Not all of it, I trust?”

With her body language, she relaxed a touch. She had the weapon now, or so she imagined. It shifted into her right hand as her left motioned towards the bed. If she was going to tend to his hair, he was going to need to sit down.
“We won’t have any deals if you plan to kill me, Miriam,” she used the name he’d provided without giving her own. Devi worked just fine for now. She was narcissistic about it anyway. “But maybe I can part with some of it.” Just maybe. Just possibly. If he could make himself an asset, she could deal with a bit of blood loss.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #8 on: November 12, 2013, 02:58:04 pm »
He moved his weight to his toes, their intimacy amplified as he leaned in, driven by gatherings of blood on her surface by his suggestions at carnality for his favors. It was good then, that she could be affected by his kind of beauty. Surely there would be no blush if she found his repulsive. Their friendship would thrive off this. His lips had been denser, he realized, starved and parched suddenly for the rosy skin. One of his fingers curled underneath the closed blades of the scissors when she took them, letting the tool and weapon draw its way off the tip, the gathered, sharp ends flicking him once as they left him. A demonstration for the Devi daughter, how he could handle small things, and make them ring.

It was daunting to hear her say the word that was the essence of what he was. His theme, his script. His strength and dismay. It was a macabre subject for mortals, their fuel, but she repeated with some thought to the sound, not fright or disgust. "Odder than me, walking through walls and leaving your knights witless?" But not so much that he'd drain her, she posed. Muscles on his jaw pulsed at the scenario. "Any amount you will allow." Deals, she said. That was the core of the matter, wasn't it?

"Blood is red for a reason,  think." he mused casually as he followed, sweeping the floor with his flow of darkness until he came to the bed, bending down to collect the silken shadow weave and put it unceremoniously on her sheets. "Let's say that my favors are paid in rubies." He looked over his shoulder at her. He supposed she had some degree of power now, him seated and her with the weapon. "I'd sooner have more rubies than kill my jeweler."

His hands were locked behind his back, admittedly tense from her aloud thought that she might let him have some. When she came close enough to tend to the fall that touched his body, one hand would reach out to search for her leg, thigh. "I need to know where you are. We'll see about trust when I look in the mirror." She could have maimed him with the steel and it wouldn't matter. He'd simply not touched her yet, and wouldn't it be delightful to count the beats of her heart while she held a pair of knives to his head. It could compromise both their focus.

"Please be gentle." He said, imitating a girl's voice, he'd once snuffed. It was a good performance, if he could say so himself. "So, Devi Daughter, assuming you do not turn me into some abomination, what would you have me do, for this service?" He quite liked being the extended arm for their minds, doing their somtimes impossible bidding. It was their own ways to tell him about themselves. His sins were overflowing richly, he only wanted to lend them the means to realize their own. All striving lead to that, eventually, a pile of bitter ash. "And if it's something debauched, aren't we overdressed?" He laughed softly to himself.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #9 on: November 12, 2013, 05:03:46 pm »
Was it odder? “Yes,” she answered as she moved around to a small jewelry box. Jewelry was certainly within, but she took out hair ties instead. She knew little about cutting hair, but she knew that long lengths of hair were often bound up before being cut.

He was on the bed then, hair unceremoniously draped across the sheets. Pretty, really. It’d be a shame to cut off too much.

He spoke of rubies as she situated herself behind him. It’d be easy, her mind said, to thrust the twin blades between his shoulders and paralyze him. Still, she did not intend to act on it. In fact, once she came to sit behind him, the blades were situated near.
“Not all customers have foresight,” she had to make sure this ‘vampire’ did, understood the blood stopped flowing if she died. If he liked her blood, he’d have to keep her alive.

His hand touched her thigh just as her fingers began to move through the length, realizing the daunting task of even getting all this hair in a hair tie. She jumped, actually surprised at the warmth of his hand. She looked down to observe its placement. She was still just in this pathetic towel, wasn’t she?
“Very well.” It suggested the scissors might be useful, if he wanted to know where she was. There was a catch in her words, in her breath.

She picked the scissors back up to snip the elastic band, and then brought it around the thick strands. It was easier than pulling all the hair through. She tied the two ends together, tight around the hair, just beyond his shoulders. Longer hair was starting to come into fashion, and she didn’t feel like butchering his appearance just yet.

She answered him as her fingers began to separate the locks into three strands beneath the tie. The hair was woven together. It was gentle, as per his request. She tried to work around the knots for now, rather than brush them out. This simple process kept her from considering the movement of his hand.
“Very narcissistic about your hair, aren’t you?” A soft laugh, but she answered, “I would have you deal with my opponents—those who will bend and those who won’t. I have a bill that I need passed,” she told him, “I’m in politics, you see. I should be going to a gala tonight,” still time to get there, “and there persuade some of the lobbyists and corporations to deal with my opponents with bribes, but that will not work for all. Those I need, um,” pause. She again felt where his hand was and bit down on her cheek. Remove was not the word she wanted, “muted.” Better, “Nothing debauched.”

Hand wrapped around the base of the braid she’d made as she managed with one hand to cut the second tie, and then use both to wrap it around the bottom. It wasn’t the end of his hair, but this would make the cut hair easier to deal with once removed. She shifted position so that she was not sitting on her knees, but rose on them,
“This will hurt,” at least his pride. The shears snipped the length just above the first tie.

No doubt, he’d have to see someone professional later to style this cut better, but the length now was decent. A pretty fall of black down his back.


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Re: Reach
« Reply #10 on: November 13, 2013, 01:59:06 am »
A lovely sound behind him, her jumping, rewarding him for the play of his fingers. The act of tending to hair was intimate in any age. An intricate labor, if done remotely right. In her voice he could hear a certain focus, and thought it was an appropriate and encouraging sign. Eventually his inclination toward letting her work lost to his desire to touch her skin again. Four tips on the cup of her knee, his hand slowly swallowing that bone and flesh. She did not jump this time. He understood he wouldn't be served that delight, each time.

"I wouldn't call it narcissistic. I love my hair more like you'd love a pet." Language did amuse him. It was an old friend, changing, growing. Not always evolving. A willful friend with quirks. Miriam would only live as long as humans did, along them, among them, and so he could always count on language as a companion. How invigorating that she'd speak with such candor. Whether she trusted him or not, she trusted the potential in the creature that he was. Deal with her opposition, he would. Hadn't he always?

"Ah, the matters of ruling the world." This would not change no matter how long he slept or how long he remained awake. The fingers that sampled her skin, warm with the water of the shower, or something else, dug deeper into her, around the hard of her knee, when she carried on, the aim to lead him toward his own conclusion. "I see. I shall take away their ability to speak up." Or speak at all, perhaps. "Against you." he added. It was important she knew he was dispatched by her, and that she take pride in it. "Oh." When she declined the debauchery.

When she changed her position, the eager hand no longer had a knee to gnaw on. Instead he innocently rested his touch on the furthermost part of her inner thigh, the placement having come natural in her new way to sit. Sharp eyebrows raised when she warned him about the coming pain. He wouldn't be gone for long if she opened up his throat and left him to soak the bed, but he thought it would be a little unceremonious of her. He'd been perfectly charming, if he were to judge.

"Ah." he breathed when his head became lighter, and the truth of her meaning came to light. Miriam rolled his head to test her work. A sigh of pleasure. "Liberating." He turned, up on his knees also, the newly freed hair splaying across one shoulder as his eyes met hers. He tipped his body closer, feigned at diving for a kiss until the scissors that she still held pushed against him. It was another game he enjoyed, betting with his own safety against her desire to use the advantages she was dealt. He looked down at the shining blades that had already cut parts of him off. Then he lifted that gaze to hers again.

"Thank you, Politician." The pain spread, louder when he moved closer. He was a rosy, healthy death staring at her. "This will suffice, wouldn't you say?" A hand up into it, to caress the inky strands out and let them settle. "Will I break hearts like this, you think?" That hand didn't return to mirror the other by his side, instead it turned inward, not slow and not fast, wanting to hang off her collarbone, and then slide down to compromise the towel over her breasts. He wondered at what juncture she'd stop him. Perhaps she'd do it by burring the cutter in his ribcage.

"Now you get to say a name." His voice changed. This was truly a deal with a demon, it's delivery needed to be fittingly grave. "So that on the gala, you might not have to say it at all."

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Re: Reach
« Reply #11 on: November 13, 2013, 02:53:24 am »
The shift in position was a mistake, for his hand easily changed its position from knee to a warmer location. As the scissors finished the cut, he moved, and so stabbing the wrist with the blades was unnecessary. ‘I am selling blood.’ He hadn’t bartered for anything else, and she was not yet willing to give more so easily, even if he would, indeed, break hearts.

And she would rule the world.
‘No.’ Too ambitious. No one could rule the world.

He moved to his own knees, lips to scissors,
“Yes, you will break hearts,” she informed him. She wouldn't lie, paranoid already aspects of her had given away her physical attraction, “Now that you do not resemble Rapunzel.” Her arms crossed almost casually underneath her breasts, intent to hold the towel there with their pressure on it, a dare in her eyes as his hand hooked into the towel. The scissors were not released, the threat in her eyes mimicking his thoughts. Yes, she just might thrust them through his ribcage, if her body language was not clear enough to him.

‘A name?’ One slipped her lips immediately, one name she did not want to mention on the gala floor as someone her would-be allies should look at, “Paul.” Could she leave it at just Paul, test to see if he would get the right now?

No, she couldn’t risk innocent Pauls.
“Paul Bourdeau,” she said, then lifted one arm from the crossed ones to brush his hand up and away from the towel. She would move. She would get dressed. “And my name is Mina Devi,” she decided he could have her name, at the very least. She did not mind Devi Daughter, but it was not a phrase many would consider common place. If she did allow him to assist, did allow him to remain near, he would have to use language as others did. That meant he’d need her name.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #12 on: November 13, 2013, 01:12:12 pm »
Miriam kissed the tips of the sheers. It was a firm peck, denting his petal limbs without wounding them. Will I break yours? It would make for a good story, he knew. The very first iteration of their persistent dance had been in the guise of love-struck, new souls. Three fingers rested on her, courting the bone of her collar, just a little underneath it, when he tried to guess what Rapunzel might be. The hair gave him a clue. Was this Rapunzel a horrible thing, then, that he looked so much better for it, to be rid of its likeness? His mouth closed in scalding mirth when she disallowed his offered disrobing.

He watched her lift his hand away from her as he saved the name, and made the constraint of Paul Bourdeau a truth yet to play out. The rejected hand came back to him, seeking comfort against his own chest. The motion had been dramatic, broken, but his mischievous nature flecking his lips - filled with so much human life - announced that he was as entertained by this as with anything else they'd done in this room. "Paul Bourdeau the mute." Miriam said with a nod, attaching the fate to the man.

"It is nice to meet you, Mina Devi, Politician." he said as she got away from the bed. He stood on the floor also, shifting his weight to try the hair once more. It did feel freeing and as though this length had more presence. Equally exotic and arctic eyes painted her in their attention, as they both were on opposite sides of the bed. He shook his head to chase the thoughts away from the situation. Those thoughts wouldn't stay away long. "I'll leave you to become pretty for the gala, then. Or dressed." A note of mourning in that last word.

He moved to the door he'd come from, brushing her shoulder with a parting pat as he passed her. "Do go easy on your guard. He did the best he could." Apologies in his voice. He turned fully to her. it was his turn to cross his arms. They hung more relaxed than hers had, as he was not protecting himself, but getting comfortable rather, leaning into the barrier he'd so easily breached. "Should I tell Paul something while he can still reply, from you?" Another game. The light came in from the side, a blade of sun, to go across the details of his face. His almost smile became a sharp, inky mark, stretching toward his ear, as though the world was warning her finally, not to do business with this creature. He'd nod quietly and leave her once she'd said her bit.

Now to acquire gala-wear.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #13 on: November 13, 2013, 02:39:34 pm »
‘The Mute.’ Now that would truly be a miracle, one who’s thought brought a smile to her lips akin to the smile that had first risen at the thought of him as a cockroach. Ah, for him to never speak again! She walked around the bed as he finally moved, shoulders brushing as they passed. She had to get dressed, yes.

Such a shame.

The fate of her guard was still debatable. She might fire them all and get new ones. If there were vampires, there were certainly those used to standing against them, right? Still, he did sound apologetic. Perhaps she would take it easy on the guard. Her thoughts were soon distracted from that as she reached down to touch the dress. What words did she have for Paul?
“Don’t kill him,” she noted. The way he spoke it sounded like Paul might die. “But no. Let’s not compromise things just yet. Tell him nothing from me.” She looked up. Would he say ‘nothing from Mina’? That smile was warning, but she’d already made the deal now, hadn’t she? Now it was to be seen if he’d complete it.

The towel fell from her once she heard Miriam’s steps. He might get one last look before he was on his way.

One day, there might be a future where she could indulge in such flights of vanity, but not today.
‘Stop it.’ She smiled to herself, knowing now that he was gone. Oh, but who didn’t dream of what they’d do if they ruled the world? It wasn’t like she planned anything bad. Delusions of world peace and happy people, where those who would thwart that were dealt with swiftly, in a 1984-way, without the dystopia. 

Red dress and red gloss. The woman was dressed shortly after the man left, and out the door by 7:30. Her guard said nothing, nor did any of the others that joined her, but there was clear relief on the face of one. There was a car waiting outside for her which she easily slipped into. She was at the gala right on time, a hotel lobby cleared out and decorated for this event.

Would he show up here, with news? Mina wondered it as she smiled and shook hands, recognized quickly by those who paid attention, even though she was not a representative of this area. Those here knew what she was trying to do, and it did not take long for the inviter to come to her side. He was a researcher, Tristan, and very interested in more funds despite how much went into this ridiculous gala. She didn’t even recall the reason why they were having it. Was it that some new research center had opened? A new vaccine released?
“There are people I want you to meet,” he said, and she smiled, agreed to meet them.

These were the ones with funds, the ones who owned most of those within the room, or the buildings they worked in. Tristan introduced her well, alongside the bill that could make or break her.
“It was her idea,” he said with a smile, “She is thinking of running for higher office, too.”

The script of their meeting was laid out then as they shook hands and shallowly spoke of mutual interests. Mina could not directly ask for money or help, but she dropped the names of those who disagreed casually, bemoaning the government system with all its lobbyists and divisions. She was only looking out for the interests of all, or so she claimed. She was not the one bribed away from doing good.

And so words came of how they’d write to some of these politicians.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #14 on: November 13, 2013, 08:12:31 pm »
If she had looked at him, she would have seen a rather revealing grin, at her request not to take Paul's life. Good foresight. It was a card he'd been known to play at any given chance. "That kind of customization will be available to you when there's blood on my tongue instead of hair on your bed." He did nod in compliance when she told him to reveal nothing damning to his victim. Perhaps that could serve as reassurance that he might not take the other's life.

Miriam savored the second glance at her nudity, and enjoyed tucking that image away as he propped the guard up sitting. A strong man, as it might be, his shirt straining to contain his chest. All that meant to the one re-situating him was that he contained more blood than others smaller than him. "I tried to speak for you, old boy." he said as he patted the cheek to shake the man again, hopefully to draw him out of the slumber he'd been forced into. "Your fate is in your employer's hands now." Blue eyes, far inferior in luster to Mina's, flickered just as the perpetrator disappeared into another room. He passed by the lady on the table and waved at her widely before returning the key.

Paul was not so well put-together as he usually was. He'd take great care of his appearance, on any other day. Instead of him choosing flamboyant patterns on his thick tie that would contrast with his hard collar, his maid had been ordered to lay something out for him. So he was proper and clean, dressed in expensive garments, but not so memorable. It worked to his advantage, in that he did look powerful, but it was hard to also look approachable in gray and black.

The car was well tempered. He was known to be a bit of a bore when it came to how hot things were not allowed to be. Paul was almost as famous for this as he was for his hobby of collecting exclusive pets. He ran his hand through his thick, golden hair and immediately flipped down the mirror from the ceiling to correct every strand again. He was sweating, but it was icy cold. What should he do about that? Open a window or turn up the heat? He did not arrive at an answer before it was time to step out.

The photographies taken of him then would show a complexion with a sheen, and perhaps that he was a shade paler than his usual calculated tan. Distress aside, he buttoned his jacket and smiled for the audience. His people ushered him quickly onto the floor. He was behind. He should be thinking of little jokes, and to keep that superior low in his voice. Instead he though of spread fur on his comforter, and cat skulls, eyeless, on all four of his bedposts after a nap he knew for a fact had not been more than twenty minutes.

There Devi was. She had been easy to speak to, easy to talk at, with that face and that body. He'd not let someone else get in his way. He'd promised himself as much. Especially not someone who aimed to step on him to get to an even higher position. And that was what she wanted. He could see it in her. Paul Bourdeau even imagined that she laughed at him when no one was present, at least no one that would tell. The spirit of competition galvanized his resolve. The stench of copper and animal shampoo filtered from his nostrils with a strong exhale. The ones who saw him might have noted that he looked formidable in that instance. He made his way briskly to intrude on the conversation she was having.

Before he could reach her, something dark intercepted his path, and held his shoulder. When Paul turned he noted that the face was observing him, like a scavenger might eye a carcass as it approached, and then, that it was well carved, a little delicate for a man's. He held his breath, and could only think of his prized animals, and their bodies thrown in tufts on his bedroom floor, mingled with the rug. The other man, who wore a healthy, almost blushing color, held such a straight line on those lips that Paul thought, in his own insanity, that he knew the scene also. It was as though they were both dreaming Paul's horror, but thought differently about that massacre. The blond tried his hardest not to remember the elegant scripture in blood on his mirror. It was impossible.

Make no money tonight, Bourdeau.

"Excuse me, sir. It was all my doing." the pretty man said before Paul's crew could catch up and force him closer to where Devi was making a success of herself. The man had meant their small collision, yes? He couldn't have meant anything else. There was no one there, when Paul looked back, only the splendor of the hotel lobby, and decadent emptiness.

"Higher office, ha." he started, a clammy hand stealing that of the philanthropist engaged in Mina. He had thought to make a small stab in her direction, but came up empty. He looked at her, suddenly wished he could tell her everything. He looked at Adam Wolkin, who most certainly was eligible for the money they needed, wanting to explain to him exactly why Paul Bourdeau was not being as witty and subtly condescending as was his trademark.

While attention was there, a black suit, a black shirt and the darkest blue tie you'd ever find came up behind her. His hair had been tied back, to honor the nature of the occasion. The lining was a red that would match her dress, but that was kept an intimate secret against his body, until he decided to open his jacket. Miriam leaned in to whisper. "He seems to be at a loss for words." A soft knuckle on the bare skin of her back, riding her spine down. "Almost as though he's mute." A discrete chuckle. "Pretty, I like the color, but it's no damp towel."

Paul looked at her, and then the man standing behind her before he excused himself, wiping his forehead and aiming for the restrooms, his staff buzzing with worry and surprise as they followed.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #15 on: November 13, 2013, 10:53:18 pm »
Mina only acknowledged Paul out of the corner of her eye when first she saw him. He deserved no more than that. Like a moth to flame, he moved to her, as she knew he would. ‘Perhaps dead would have been best.’ But she still pretended not to notice his movements until he was among them, commented on a statement one said of her future plans.

A hand was stolen and Mina looked his way, lips quirked up. He was not himself. Up close, it was obvious.
“Yes, higher office,” she said, amused no cutting remark had followed his first few words. ‘Won’t you pursue more, too?’ It’d be fun, in a twisted way, to continue their rivalry to the highest levels, until one proved best. Victory was best won when it could be seen in the eyes of the defeated.

“Are you well, Mr. Bourdeau?”
Adam asked him, seeming to catch something as off with him. It was in the grip.

Someone joined before he answered, Mina catching Paul’s look. Was that a desperation she saw there, a longing to speak? How queer. Knuckle to spine, the dress’s back was open, and she let him whisper without offering him a direct look. She could tell, however, he had quickly figured out the fashions of the time from the corner of her eye.
“Who is this?” For ‘this’ was not familiar.

‘The one who just muted Paul.’
She was pleased, but couldn’t show it too much, couldn’t comment on his preferences for her clothing. No, composure was key here, and she was good at maintaining it. Instead, she slipped an arm around him, hand to his back, and made to push him a step closer to be in the circle, now looking at him. Approving smile, appraisal done quickly. “My friend, Miriam.”

And so Tristan offered a hand to him to shake, as well,
“Nice to meet you. What is it you do?”

‘Anything I want?’
Hopefully Miriam was quick with his words.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #16 on: November 14, 2013, 02:25:48 am »
He watched Paul go. That had went as it was meant to, hadn't it. And Mina was pleased. This was most important. He had attracted some attention himself, it seemed, from her acquaintances. It was an easy thing to move with her physical invitation into the sphere of familiarity. He slid along comfortably and smiled without fangs as he shook the offered hand. "And it is nice to meet you too." There would be more handshakes to follow. He used the niceties to reengage the prospect Paul had intimidated slightly with his lack of tact.

"What I do is support Ms Devi." he answered honestly. "I am a long time fan." He laughed at the ceiling. Mina would know that it wasn't exactly his voice. Surely in her games to win favors and gold she would be familiar with the concept of changing persona to fit the company you needed to please. He'd picked most of it up when he visited the Bourdeau house, but figured out the finery of it walking in here. False, yes, but not more so than in the echelons of the empires he'd seen.

He couldn't play with her the way he wanted, not with so many eyes. It would be good to see her world. It would provide a challenge, also. His face would no longer be completely unknown to them, even if he intended to show them a side of him that wasn't so presentable, if they were ever in the way of his tasks. He learned new names quickly, in this circle. Tristan was already with them. Miriam set his sights for Adam. "I see you're a fan too?" Knowing smile. He'd long since let go of the intimidation sewn into the shadows he couldn't show. A vampire could also be a merchant. "Medicine and its progress is guaranteed. Now, your profit isn't if you're not at its forefront." Miriam came to stand beside the man. "I am a recovering betting man, you see, and am only allowed to spend my money on sure things. That's why I'm here."

Adam seemed to like the phrasing of that and looked at Tristan shortly before returning his attention to Miriam. "And that is why I'm here too." he said, though he wasn't sure that had been correct. He intended to donate toward some goal today, but the main goal had been to do that, rather than having a specific venture in mind. "I do like a sure thing." And that, at least, was accurate. The dapper, lively man dressed in dark colors smiled, pleased with this, and that in turn pleased Adam.

"A man after my own taste." He looked at Mina then, with a shadow on the right corner of her lips that would bring her back to the demon she'd encounter in her hotel room. "I'll sweat and bleed for profit." he explained. "People like Tristan here share my interests now and again. Their passion and expertise makes me look good. He'll sweat and bleed for my contributions." Violet strands wove tighter onto the blue ones in his irises. She would know the next words out of his lips were serious. "How about you, Mina, wouldn't Adam's contribution be worth bleeding for?" All verbal contracts with demons are binding. Miriam did believe Adam's money - and he was sure the amount would be substantial - was his own at this point. A hand, warm with cat's blood, patted Adam on the shoulder, as though offering the man to the woman in the red dress.

Money for your blood, Devi.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #17 on: November 17, 2013, 03:43:19 am »
He acted well, which was going to be a necessary skill if he wanted to be in sight. Mina allowed the smile to remain as he played his role, pleased as he introduced himself and what he did. It was descriptive enough for this crowd. Tristan, too, was a fan. His support had brought her here, and it seemed that Miriam’s support was going to clench the deal.

She wouldn’t let go of a sure thing. She might have persuaded Adam to deal with her on her own, but pride wouldn’t make her shut down the opportunity now that it presented itself. She understood the deal she was making from Miriam’s words alone. She owed him blood already for muting Paul. What was a little more for Adam?
“Of course,” Mina agreed, and Adam stepped forward with the pat, “As you say, medicine is a sure thing, a profitable venture for many, particularly in today’s age of quick advancements. My goals of funding medical advancements are well known, and I have done plenty of work already to see it move forward even more.”

Tristan bobbed his head appropriately.

Profit couldn’t be her stated goal, no.
“It has benefited everyone,” her hand brushed by her own neck, a double-meaning Adam wouldn’t catch. Wasn’t it often the necks vampires in the stories liked? It was meant to draw Adam’s attention to her necklace, an expensive gem she wore casually. The dress itself was expensive, too, but it was not an obvious sign of wealth. Not to a man, anyway.

“Well,” he caught on, but what or who had persuaded him at last was uncertain, “Tristan has spoken of his own good fortune since he became a fan of yours,” a grin. “I believe I shall support this cause of yours, Ms. Devi.”

“Please,”
she smiled, “Mina.” They would be friends, or she’d pretend to be friends with him. “I am grateful for your support. This world still needs so many cures to be patented.” Owned, copyrighted, sold for profit. He’d have a share in them, for now.

Let him be ignorant of her higher goals for the time being, where living healthy was not a luxury.

The night moved smoothly on. Adam’s move to gamble on her inspired others in his circle, and the ripple effect spread out with Paul, more or less, indisposed. As the night wound down and people began to leave, Mina touched Miriam’s arm,
“Come,” she invited, “You can ride with me back to your hotel. We’re staying at the same one, aren’t we?”

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Re: Reach
« Reply #18 on: November 17, 2013, 03:59:12 pm »
Miriam had stood by Adam quite diligently, when Mina traced her own tunnel of life with her fingers. Lashes around his advanced colors tightened, darkened. Always so brave, the Devi bloodline. If this had been the old kingdoms he'd simply have at here right here, and throw an order to the guards that everyone who saw were to be dealt with permanently. Then he'd dance with her, perhaps, to tailored music and speak heated warnings in her ear.

There was no such opportunity during the evening. Miriam watched Adam spearhead little talks, gold on his tongue now, about his new crusade. Mina did well in providing not only an opportunity for monetary growth, but also a cause he could dress up as righteous, both to Adam self and to others. The whole thing developed its own momentum, and Mariam didn't concern himself with it much after it had ignited the spirit of the rich in the room. He drank their wine and inflated their egos wherever there was need, but mostly he jumped from conversation to conversation, soaking up culture and mannerisms until he felt duly submerged in this present decade.

After having entertained himself by nudging Paul Bourdeau further into becoming the recluse of this event, and casually running into Mina whenever he could, he was glad to feel her touch. The face that had dazzled funders for her cause all evening smiled back at her, the targeted arm lifting to make a perfect loop for hers, offered. "Yes. For a nightcap, perhaps?" he said. The smile was almost dumb, cunning eyes large and distracted, that they could still peddle the lie that theirs was a shallow friendship, to all the infatuated who had shaken her hand but wanted more.

He was not so daft in her vehicle, his posture elevated when they were seated next to each other. A hand, still drenched in the heat of twenty-seven lives of four feline, laid itself over hers, and held her between her fingers. Suddenly his shadows were prominent again, sharper nose, wicked mouth. "I've been away so long. It was good to mingle." A term from his new wealth of language. "I should expect to do a lot of business with you, now that' I've seen the trajectory of your ambition." His fingers applied more pressure between hers. "It is a good thing the human body replenishes fast." He had to stop the images of her laying anemic, one pretty, red heel in the grave from his overzealous taking. It was too tempting.

That picture resurfaced again, when they were by her door, her guards at a good but not optimal distance. Miriam had come to like this corridor, its promise. The nerves embedded at the center of his fangs had the little weapons itch. Too long since he had blood of her quality. He could smell it through her perfume, how it brewed itself beneath her clothes and skin. "So, Ms. Devi." He looked to the side, where the men were trying to seem as though their attention was elsewhere. "I have to confess. I don't have a room in this building." While his acting never seeped into his eyes with her - the glint of genocide never leaving to convince her he was not a creature that lived on human life - he raised his shoulders to feign being cold, though the thought was preposterous in this well tempered environment. A trick, as always, even if its goal was not concealed to her. He had, in fact, already started to lean closer, which left her with the options of stopping him somehow, take his body onto hers with whatever intimacy he'd derive from this, or open the door to give herself space. "If you could find it in your heart to let me stay." he whispered.

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« Reply #19 on: November 17, 2013, 04:31:03 pm »
Arms linked, “Perhaps,” Mina gave no complete agreement before the sights of others as they walked out to the car.

Within, he took her hand rather than her arm. The pressure was slowly applied.
“I am glad you enjoyed yourself,” it would be good if he had fun. It was better than being bored, certainly. The question was on her lips, but she could not ask it. ‘How did you silence him?’ Now that they were away from prying eyes and prying ears, she did want to know, despite herself. She knew ignorance would be better in this game, when she saw Paul again. If she had no idea what had happened, then she couldn’t appear guilty.

And he was serious. Mina hadn’t been certain about this blood-thing being truly serious until then, when he mentioned how quickly the human body replenished. Did he feel how much quicker her blood rushed with that thought? Certainly with all the pressure he was applying, he must have.
“You should expect to do more business of that nature. You do it well.” Car stopped. They were outside the hotel, and Mina let her fingers slide out from his and allowed her guards to lead them back to the room.

She had honestly suspected he did not have a room at all. She had not considered what to do about that, and glanced at one of her guards who was pretending to be invisible. Were they paid well enough to stay loyal, to not go run their mouth to the press? No, not yet. She smiled at his little acting,
“I did consider our nightcap,” she leaned forward, looked up at him through eyelashes, lifted a hand to his upper shoulder, palm resting against his chest, fingers able to drum if she had wanted them to. “I think I could let you in for that.”

And one hand reached back, turned the knob, and pushed the door open. She straightened, then. Hand left its place over his chest.
“Luke, won’t you find a room near for my friend?” He could deal the desk people.

The guard had straightened up at the sound of his name. This was the one who had failed and allowed the man entrance in the first place. He took it as a good sign that he was called upon to perform an action, and knew he couldn’t fail again.
“Of course, Ms. Devi.” And with that he walked off.

Devi turned from Miriam and walked into the room,
“Do close the door,” she told Miriam without looking back to see if he followed her in. She knew he would. There was this matter of a nightcap to deal with after all, and he wouldn’t want any more wine.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #20 on: November 17, 2013, 08:25:59 pm »
Her hand on his chest did limit his advance. What a sweet way to do so. Mention of the drink he'd suggested. The literal thought of refreshments wasn't unpleasant. She would be mistaken if she thought she could serve him something of a good vintage - no matter how red - and that it would satisfy him better than a knick on her fingertip. He didn't know she already knew that, then. It wasn't far from him, though, to imagine simply enjoying her company. They had not know each other for generations now. What would be new with her, this time? He guessed one night of conversation wouldn't be enough.

"Lovely." he said as he stepped in, looking at Luke with familiarity the man wouldn't understand. She'd been merciful toward the guard. When Miriam closed the door, he felt himself. The pulse from when he'd held her hand in the car ghosted through the nerves in his fingers, rattling his wrist with the rhythm he could remember. The memory made him hungry. He followed soon, shrugging out of his jacket to confess his little nod toward her dress, the red back of his vest meant as a compliment. First button undone on the shirt collar, tie loosened just so.

Miriam came after her. "Too much pretend." he said behind her, to her shoulder. He didn't know if she'd know what he meant. They had always had to be secretive. Very few circles of social nature would allow for a monster like him to be who he was with her. "It must always be so, I suppose." Regretful. He brushed her back again, unless she moved away. Such an effective design. If she'd not fled yet, or maneuvered herself in such a way that his plan became impossible or inelegant, his touch would flatten on either side of her spine, palms molding to contours, to then encircle her waist, where her body curved inward, behind the red folds of her dress.

"Yes, I think I quite like this fashion on you." he said. The potency of her blood responded to his nearness, or so he told himself he could feel. He wanted his presence to wash her in the heat he'd seen this morning. This blush wouldn't be from surprise. She had complimented his fulfilling of their arrangement. "Now, for swelling your treasury," After all, Paul's silence had been bought by her skills with the scissors, she only owed him for Adam's money, now. "How would you like to settle?" She had been calm about what he was, too much so, for him to believe that she truly believed yet. This was a demonstration he wouldn't mind giving.

"A few drops will suffice, just to remind the palled." Patience on his part. She would only grow fuller in taste the longer he offered to preform her sins for her. If she'd allowed him around her waits before, his cat-slayer fingers on her stomach and his cat-ripper thumbs on her back would push a little deeper into her flesh. There was always an innate longing to be closer. "You can have the marks wherever you want. It's tradition to commemorate the first acquaintance between fangs and teeth, though I could certainly erase them if you'd like." Another gift bestowed on him, his ability to erase the tell-tale marks of his drinking.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #21 on: November 17, 2013, 11:17:19 pm »
Mina wondered if Luke would knock when he had the information, or wait outside, as the man approached her. This time, there was no pretend, no game to play at moving away. She might be uncomfortable, but there was an understanding that this discomfort was something she would have to get used to, like the awkwardness of a first date. “Yes, it must,” she agreed.

Warm touch, something of an embrace. Mina arched her neck so she could look up and back at the demon standing behind her. A smile at the compliment, and the easy move back to business.
“I’d prefer to settle completely,” she didn’t know how much that was, if the ‘few drops’ were a complete settlement. “No marks,” she couldn’t afford such questions, and the only places she’d be comfortable with were places not easily hidden.

Such pressure, though. He was much stronger than he appeared.

She lifted her left arm, wrist bent, offering it up,
“If here will settle, then you can take from here.” Perhaps she should have asked more about these prices, and from where payment would come from. Well, next time, perhaps she would discuss it more. He would not kill her, but some days she might need to avoid being drained in order to interact appropriately with the outside world. Looking sick or pale would not benefit her.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2013, 11:34:21 pm by Krystal Itzume »

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Re: Reach
« Reply #22 on: November 19, 2013, 12:36:05 am »
"It is good to be debt free. Creates trust." he agreed and wrapped his hands further around her waist, which slid them over her stomach, underneath that dress, to push her against him. The pulse he could feel on her abdomen, framing her navel with his fingers, was delicious. Not panicked. No, not her, but not completely at ease, either. It was only fair that each of their reintroductions would come to this, a plethora of first times. His own heart roiled his own blood faster when her arm bent.

The vein-work underneath her skin boasted with a blue many times more subtle than the ones in her eyes. This color spoke in other ways, threaded with her essence, shining at him from many depths inside her arm. Like deep, bruised smoke caught in frosted milk. He was transfixed on the thump-song the layers of life-root sang to themselves. On top of this spectacle of delicious anatomy was twin sinew, a useless last fence to deter beasts like him. Appeal to his better side, would they?

A small purring, hoarse in his chest, bubbling up in his throat as he nuzzled her neck, looking for comfort, restraint in physicality, eyes never wrenching from the rhythmic promise she held up. "Yes." It was against his nature not to bargain. Mariam never sought to fool the Devi blood, no, he wanted it to become what it was, more. His corrupting soul only fooled itself in its desire to hasten the process. That kind of stride wouldn't be pure. "Then I thank you for you sense of honor." he whispered on the angel of her jaw.

He took his hands back from her skin, scraping her waist and twisting around her. Some dance maneuver, perhaps, if there were dances for what he and she did. A smile, the pair of secrets on his upper row of teeth were revealed in all their polished, stretched promise. His eyes did not leave hers when he breathed on the forearm she offered, and he clutched, rending it horizontal. Lips closed a kiss over that little stroke of double sinew. She would feel it, the lighting visit from his fangs. He wanted to see it on her - would her nose wrinkle, would her lips purse - so he couldn't look away.

Furiously blushing pearls would grow on her from his enamel magic, little berries welling up and staying their round shapes at a perfect distance from each other. For drops they would be fat, but could still be categorized as such. Miriam put his forehead to hers, magnifying his irises for her, blurring them. There was a monster in the pit of his torso, scratching at his gullet to come out. He wanted her to feel it, too, how he weighed on the edge of his control for her. And then his self-defying gaze left her to take in the richness of her life's color. Two pecks, quickly, sticky, with a sharp tongue in the wake of the pressure, to glisten her skin. Healing elixir to shut the needle punctures.

Miriam gasped on her wrist, holding it harder when the spell of her blood became a sweet but volatile flavor. It filled his head first, and played with the severity of his own veins. To her it would indeed seem like dark roots momentarily surfacing in milk, waving on the otherwise undisturbed membrane, before sinking back to be concealed in the pale depths again. His usually warm lips would glower for the seconds that her red spread in him. It wasn't enough to live off, but it was enough to make him greedy.

He lifted the arm she'd offered over his head, to place it behind his neck. Always the scoundrel, even in intoxication. "Ah, now that's dealt with." A soft, frustrated laughter. He locked his hands behind her back, to hold her suddenly closer, unless she took advantage of his oncoming lethargic and stepped back. "Tomorrow I must follow you again, so I can find more of your enemies, and earn more rubies."

One in particular, that night, drank to himself. He'd not attended the gala, but he'd heard of her success. He drank to it in bourbon, said her full name. It was not a friendly tone.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #23 on: November 21, 2013, 08:39:28 pm »
When he first nuzzled her neck, she imagined he would bite there instead and tensed, despite herself. Miriam did not. He had restraint instead, moved his hands and lifted her wrist to his lips. Warm breath came before the teeth. Her arm tensed, the move to pull it away stopped short as she registered the punctures. The corner of her mouth stilled itself after it began to move to a revolted frown. The need to move away was strong, but she stilled herself, willed herself to endure the sight more than anything.

Blood bubbled up. She saw it just before his forehead pressed to hers and she was forced to remember how close they were, forced to look him in the eye. There was restraint within both of them, made obvious through the colored windows. Mina felt it, saw it.

Inhale.

He drew back and took his prize, the two drops, before his tongue closed the wounds. A breath, and the veins darkened as the healing proceeded, or so Mina told herself. It was not some vile poison that had been put into her veins, even if her mind insisted on such imaginings. Why would he poison the source?

He did not allow her to pull her hand back or pull away from him. Instead, he pulled her closer, evoking a true glare. She was not allowed to examine the hand, to see that the wound was gone, to touch it and make sure it was real.

She did take advantage, hands to his chest, a push to move herself out of his grasp. Now she could look at her wrist as he spoke, eyes down. The thumb of her other hand pressed on it.
“We’ll see what tomorrow brings,” tomorrow she had little on the agenda. A meeting with her political allies to debate strategy, for when the larger group would meet again. “Tomorrow I see allies instead of enemies, but you will come all the same.” Allies could always become enemies. There were those in her circle who sought the same nominations that she wanted for higher offices.

Finished examining it, she looked back up,
“I suspect this will not be the usual amount I pay you,” of that she was certain. “In the future, I would like to know the price before you are committed to any action.” Thumb left wrist, and she walked towards the door. There was clear discomfort still, for the action and its quick healing left her unbalanced. It was unnatural, and in that way, it was revolting and alluring all at once.

These were not things she’d been prepared for. Humans and the human world she understood. An outsider to that changed the game.

For better or worse, though, Mina intended to keep this outsider on her side in the game, her ‘queen’. Her hand rested on the door knob.
“Is there anything else, or shall I see if Luke has returned with a room for you?” Lips curved slightly, almost a smirk. Her old confidence would come back fully after the night passed.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #24 on: November 22, 2013, 12:18:50 am »
Hand on his chest again. Mina could do this so well, The Devi were experts. In ancient generations she had liked to pull him in by the back of his head, only to reject him when their bodies touched, with a firm shove. That rendition of their partnership had been passionate to a fault. She was always daring him silently to kill her. It is unfair to expect anything less from blood so fully laced with ambition. Mina held the healed arm and studied it while he studied her. It reminded him a bit of a warrior, surveying her blade for cracks. It felt a bit as a test to his own skills to tend to the wounds. There would be no discernible traces to what had transpired but the ringing pleasure, small singe of nerves, a little phantom that would pique at her attention until she could forget. It was a matter of habit, to handle that small potion.

Miriam breathed in deeply through an open smile, lips over teeth. "Allies? Already? Why, Ms Devi, I'm not sure that's appropriate." Despite his making fun, he would like to see them. A matter of shopping for future need for himself in her strife, but also an opportunity to know her better. In some earlier lives she had liked him to remain a secret - possessive, those women - it was good to have a chance at daylight this time around. Inside the crowd is always a better vantage point. "I'll come." he promised.

The next was an intimate issue. "I'm willing to discuss price with you, yes." She could be a furious businesswoman. He invited that. There was some tainted pleasure in seeing her decide what her blood was worth, and what he may and may not have it for. At the mention of it, her aroma warmed his tongue again, and coiled with details of her strengths and secrets up his nostrils. The sensation was thin like culinary placebo, but that was enough to be grand for a first taste of many. "I suspect the actions to which you commit me to in the future wont be as easy as tongue tying men with pensions for cats, either." He'd raise his amount, of course. Nothing else could be possible.

Miriam came to her, where she stood by the gaping frame of the door, and slid into his jacket with a lift of his shoulders, extension of his arms. Hands in his pockets quietly, he stood by her, looking at her. Silence and motion and eye contact was intimate in any age. His filled pockets lifted his jacket outward, which stretched the fabric over his shoulders. He liked this new stance. He'd seen it in youths, walking to her place. Every new era came with new demeanors. "Anything else? What else could there be between a man and a woman in her room, this late, Devi Daughter?" When he grinned, there were no unnatural fangs. He made sure he hovered close enough that she would see. "Until tomorrow."

The morning did come.

Alaise Ivory did not wear a suit. Instead he'd chosen a sand colored blazer to go with the crimson pants he wore. He was rather broad shouldered and tall, and was considered handsome by most. His thick eyebrows and strong jaw coupled with his beak nose could be intimidating at certain angles. He'd not let this be seen when he was trying to be personable. With his right hand he knocked on her door, and with his left, he held a bag with bagels. He was the son of the Ivory empire, which included land as well as several industries. He'd been groomed all his life to lead and look good doing so. Mina and he had met in politics, and she was always at his level without them really interacting. He'd never given her much thought until recently, when he himself was making big moves. The funding she had acquired last night had cemented her importance. She was a threat, which meant she needed to be under surveillance, and coaxed into being a friend for his cause.

Her guards had let him knock after examining the bag. Alaise had expected as much, even for himself, which was why he was surprised to see a man pass the guards without being bothered, to come and stand by his side. Ivory might have been better suited for this new person, with his skin holding that color. Alaise forgot himself for a moment, trying to guess who this new person was. He cleared his throat. "Who are you, my good man, are you a friend of Ms Devi?"

This man carried himself like a noble, Miriam noted. The mannerisms were hidden behind an act, but there was a raging river of condescension and arrogance beneath that back-slicked hair and even tan. Industrialist, then, since blood didn't matter to this current world. His attempt at a friendly mask was well performed. His entitlement shone through from several cracks. Miriam was going to point one out, for him. "Aren't you going to give me your name first?"

Alaise could feel his face take on a healthier sheen. That was, his blood rushed upward to his head, courtesy of his anger at this man. "Alaise Ivory of the Ivory Group." that should shut him up. The other man, lengthy hair tied back, nodded his porcelain features. Was he some kind of boy toy for Mina? She had expensive taste, by the looks of it. Faces like that didn't come cheap. "And who are you?"

"I'm a friend and fan of Ms Devi. In that way, I suppose I'm in the Devi Group." Miriam replied with a slow succession of words. "Now, to conclude this introduction, here, let me show you." He extended his hand the small distance between them. This man reeked of anger, and the scent fouled further when Lukas huffed in amusement. The two would be locked in an awkward handshake, Miriam smiling in his usual celestial sheen, and Alaise hardfaced, when she opened. "Oh, good morning, Mina."

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Re: Reach
« Reply #25 on: November 23, 2013, 01:38:22 am »
Mina nearly shoved him out into the hallway at his comment. She certainly slammed the door harder than necessary at his implications, no doubt to poor Luke’s surprise. Luke was going to be demoted to errand boy, and guard, as he discovered in the morning when he was sent to get coffee. At least he did not protest it.

Pulling herself together was always a slow process, but she woke up early to account for it. By 6am she was sitting on her bed, sipping at the warm liquid, and glowering at the rising sun. By 7, she had actually risen and dressed herself, and flipped the news on so she would be aware of any important events. Her tablet was nearby, and she idly flipped through stories on the global scale as the news introduced pets that needed adopted.

A smirk graced her lips when she glanced over. Miriam’s comment rung in her head. Poor, poor Paul. A knock disturbed her from such thoughts, though.
‘Who?’ She was not planning to leave for another hour or so, the meeting not until 9am.

Tip toes showed her that outside were two familiar faces, one she certainly did not expect to see. All the same, she opened the door, and let the smell of bagels reach her and bring about a smile to her lips. She had not, in fact, had breakfast. She was planning to wait until the meeting with her allies,
“Ivory,” she addressed him formally, and to the other, “Good morning, Miriam,” informally. Status and relation were established with those words. “Such an unpleasant expression, Ivory,” she noted, cast a glance towards Luke, who tried to stifle his laughter. Such failure. She wasn’t sure if she appreciated the honesty of his amusement or not.

She shifted her weight to one leg, motioned with one hand to Miriam, inviting him in if he wanted to. He could stay for whatever business Alaise had, and if Alaise wished not to stay, she could at least fill him in on who she would be meeting with. A briefing of sorts.
“I hope you have not brought bagels to break bad news to me.” The question was implied. He’d need to give her some idea of his business to be allowed in.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #26 on: November 23, 2013, 02:30:15 pm »
She had well assembled herself, Miriam saw when she opened the door. He squeezed Alaise one last time before returning the hand to the man who found surprisingly good composure for the emotions he was feeling. A sign of good a diplomat. Miriam had to think bureaucracy was every bit as immortal as he was. There had been some hope to see Mina slightly undone by sleep, her hair a nest of bedridden honesty, but he knew the hour was too late for that. He would have to be satisfied with the remnants of the glare she'd shot him yesterday, at his suggestive, probably borderline lewd proposal. If he touched the frame, would it still have ghostly reverberations from the way she'd shut it?

Alaise huffed before he rediscovered himself completely, and stood straight, smiling friendly. It had been a mistake to let this other person get under his skin, and even more so to be ruffled by Mina's small pique. The guard should be dealt with, he'd have to figure out how, later. "I was just surprised by Miriam, here." he said honestly. The pretty oaf didn't make a move to apologize for this even though there was a less than subtle hint in Alaise's demeanor. It of course added insult to insult when the milky hued man was allowed entrance to casually. It was Mina's turn then, to be subject for his hints, this time suggesting that she should make known her connection to this dapper jester.

Miriam noticed a strange entitlement radiating from the man, barely blond underneath all that product. It wasn't the usual noble nonsense. It seemed possessive, rather. Alaise wasn't romantically invested in Ms. Devi, but whatever Miriam's connection to Mina was, according to this man, it was a threat to his plans. It prompted the otherworldly instigator to brush her arm as he passed her, two fingers breathing over the pinpricks that wouldn't be there anymore.

Alaise leaned to go as well, focused on the slender fingers leaving Mina's skin. He soon noticed his entrance had a condition. Before he allowed himself to be upset at this unfair fact, he held up the bag for her. "Oh no. No bad news at all. I was just here to congratulate you on how well the raiser went yesterday." He himself had very little need for such help, but still very much made it his business to know when other's acquired funds. The better she placed herself, the harder it would be to control her in the future.

Miriam made himself comfortable in a chair to watch the two. If he wanted to, he could be a wallflower. One leg over the other, hands rolling on the ends of the armrests, he took in the show. A bloated sentiment of triumph ran off his elevated chin, all for Alaise's fixation. It was a childish game - I have something you don't - but just as delicious. Ivory. Miriam thought of the name a little. Yes, this man seemed to be formidable in today's arena. The pallid ancient stayed still in his gray, blue vested suit, to see what more Alaise might reveal of himself.

"And it's not so strange that I come to see you, is it, Mina?" he asked. "We have many things in common." Too many things, he thought to himself. And that was why he wanted to gage her. If she backed him, he would better his ow chances many times.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #27 on: November 25, 2013, 10:59:50 pm »
Alaise thought them familiar enough to use her first name. She arched a brow, but did not comment. That revealed his intentions, as if they weren't obvious enough from the comment about her success. Yes, he was here to sell something, or to buy it. She had drawn his attention. This meant he could be an ally, but one who would have a dagger at her back.

“Yes, we do have a lot in common, Ivory.”
Mina would not be half so casual. She was not trying to court him, after all. He was going to have to do the work here.

And even if he succeeded, she, too, would be holding a dagger at his back. Rome always had it right.

Or perhaps a dog would be a better term? A well trained, pretty, purebred sort, who was currently observing as she made a motion to invite Alaise in,
“Come in then,” she suggested, “We can share a celebratory breakfast of sorts before I tend to more business.” When he entered, she would close the door behind him, but not lock it.

Yet, as she stepped back to give him space, she cast a glance to the one sitting and relaxing. She had no intention of dismissing him, but she was interested in why he seemed to take such a relaxed position. It amused her, just a little, because it was easy to sense that Alaise did not like him. His demeanor was perfect, but there were hints of his feelings in his body language.
“Take a seat where you like,” there was, of course, a table with chairs, but there was also the bed where she had been sitting and sipping her coffee. The empty coffee cup now rested on the end table near the bed, her tablet actually on the bed. The bed did not show use except for as a place to sit. She’d made the bed a little bit ago, fortunately.

The telly buzzed about the weather now, the tablet would show news about a vaccine that had shown promise in curing spinocerebellar ataxia.


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Re: Reach
« Reply #28 on: November 26, 2013, 07:31:10 pm »
He was glad to have her permission to come in, though he had expected more enthusiasm. He was as purebred as she thought, and lived his life with an aftertaste of silver on his tongue. It was a bit out of place that someone who'd just seen political success, if that was what you could call it, would be tentative of his friendship and company. It was like this with airs, though, that you could not abandon them at any point, once you were committed. Additionally, she could be won over yet.

Alaise moved in past her, and went to put the bag down by the table, looking quickly over the room. He endeavored not to seem judgmental about her accommodations. He was not that, after all, though it would be quite consistent with his personality to be. Instead he was trying to learn something about her. While it looked casual; the tablet, the tv, it all suggested she was getting information. What was new, and what did the public know? It was not a simple matter of reading the newspaper. She wanted current events from every source.

Miriam had raised his hand promptly at meeting her eyes, waving in an inviting, playful manner though he hardly believed she would come and humor him. The gesture was deliberate and controlled enough that Alaise might not see and misinterpret. Then again, the human man was paying rather close attention right now. Miriam decided to be quiet and this meeting unfold. He'd picked a chair by the tv, which might suggest Mina and Alaise could have some kind of privacy in the chairs arranged around the table at the other end of the room.

Alaise had thought so and sat down. He started to open the bag with as much noise as possible while still being somewhat proper, so that Mina would come to him. She had, of course, also been right in that he did not like Miriam, and that Alaise sought to have her attention for now. "Yes, a celebration." he said, chipper. "For further advances in medicine, and your help in this." He looked at her then. "What business do you have today?" and then added, in order to not seem too prying. "I don't mean to keep you too long."

Miriam rocked the foot, suspended on the leg over the other. He was learning from the Ivory man how politicians played their games these days, complementing the bank of knowledge he'd started to build and catalog yesterday. Alaise was an expert, but a little blunt for the fine seams of a pretty and solid ruse. This meant Alaise had grown up on these scenes, and usually had the luxury of having the upper hand. If he set his sights on Mina's goals, he would be trouble. Delightful. Purple-blue eyes shifted to Mina, to see what she'd do. This was like a theater. Mina was playing for him, whether she wanted to or not. With innocent lightness, Miriam rolled up his left sleeve to expose the underside of his forearm, as he placed it back to lay, palm up, on the arm of the chair - a little reminder, if she needed one, of their small intimacy yesterday.

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Re: Reach
« Reply #29 on: November 26, 2013, 07:56:27 pm »
Mina shut the door, left it unlocked, and turned back to the room to observe the two men. One waved to her, and she moved, but not to him. As the noise was being made by that bag, she picked up the remote left on the bed. It would be simple to turn off the television to give them silence, but Miriam needed to appear distracted. Mina knew he would not be, but Alaise need not know that he was sharing a room with an attentive monster.

“Help in what?”
She echoed, but he did not explain, asked something else as she walked around the bed, and to Miriam. “I have strategy today,” she answered him in vague terms. He was not in that circle, after all. He did not need further information about what they would be plotting, only that they would be plotting. They were always plotting, she and those other politicians who fell into her circle of allies by virtue of party affiliations.

Miriam’s palm turned up, wrist revealed. A subtle play, but she was not willing to buy anything right then. She set the remote in his hand instead,
“Watch what you will,” she told him before moving to the table where Alaise was set up, bagels and plates. Mina took one for herself as she sat down, legs crossed at the knee. She pulled the bagel into its halves and found the cream cheese.

“Now,” she said, not looking up from him but tending to the bagel. Knife found, cream cheese opened, “What is this matter you require my help in?” Knife spread the bagel, no doubt not as warm as when he first got it, but not yet room temperature, “I should receive no congratulations for help I’ve yet to give,” she noted, lifted her eyes briefly.

‘Don’t count your chickens before they hatch.’


Eyes shifted back down, hiding that bit of teasing. It wasn’t good to toy with another, to remind them that help could be withheld. She set the knife aside and picked up the bagel, but did not yet bite into it.