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Nadya Lunălescu last won the day on April 25 2019

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  1. [Nadya] Not gonna lie, Nadya was expecting... more. A pentagram burned into the grass or black candles partially melted on the boulders, maybe a creepy scarecrow or two or some abstract thingamajigs hanging from the trees about the clearing, or even a skull somewhere. An old one dug up from a grave or something, not a new one, with bits of meat still on it and a patina of blood, dry or still wet, because ugh! Something! Instead, it was just a bucolic scene, the only pall over it coming from the overcast skies and dry leaves fallen early crackling under their feet, the colour of the trees just beginning to turn. Hardly witching weather at all. But there was nothing! Or, at least, there appeared to be nothing. "That's what the Witch-Bitch wants us to think, Rae-Rae," Nadya countered, burying doubt behind brashness, a finger tapping her temple, her other hand patting a pocket, feeling the Goddess-granted knife inside. Through the pang of resentment and disappointment the wiry Romani offered the Aesir Athlete a scoffing smirk. "You don't think she'd make it that easy, do ya? Let's look 'round a little. Maybe old witches aren't good at math and messed up on the coordinates something. Can't expect them to figure out GPS that quickly right?" This was a totally fantastic and insightful idea, and while Nadya hadn't really expected it to be that easy, how awesome would it have been if she'd been proven right just as soon as they had stepped into the clearing? Rachel snorted doubtfully. "Riiiight. I think the baddest things we're going to find here are some broken beer bottles and some stubbed out joints." "I betcha we find something more than that," Nadya said as she began padding out into the clearing on the balls of her feet, silent and sure-footed despite her chunky heels. "If I'm wrong, I'll take your next turn at giving Wolf a bath, if I'm right, you take mine." Rachel blinked, then followed after her Moon-touched - in more than one sense of the word - friend. "Hey! You haven't washed him once yet." Nadya flapped a dismissive hand behind her. If wasn't her fault that it just very, very conveniently fell out that way through precisely factored machinations of her own. She wasn't a tracker, but her sharp, silvery eyes knew what a crime scene looked like, what it felt like, and what it took to cover it up. She looked for disturbed dirt, where something may have been buried or dug up, sniffed at the air, for traces of burnt... anything, sage or patchouli or eye or newt or whatever else witches might use in their spells. "You heard what Archie said 'bout this place. Beasties and baddies hiding here, just waiting to be stirred up, seems like just the place for a witch to cause some trouble for Salem. Y'know, rile up a... wicker man and a swarm of bees," Nadya said softly, listening for any sort of possibly riled up beastie. "Or a Nemean Skunk or something. At least none of the guys are with us, right? Might've been been pestered by one of the Nymphs on the way if we were." "C'mon, Nads, be serious," Rachel growled, gloved hands balling into fists. "I am. Those nymphs are worse than the Plastics in Mean Girls, not to mention making a girl question her own quite evident hawtness." She flashed the blonde a quick grin over her shoulder. "Not me, of course." Nadya turned back to the near picturesque scene, idly continuing her blather. "Do you think there might be unicorns in these woods." She couldn't quite quell a childhood squee at the thought of riding a Gods honest fucking unicorn. "Probably aren't prancy horses that fart rainbows though. Badass mofos that go berserk at the scent of wap, ya think?" Rachel sighed. "Let's just get this done and meet up with the others at the cemetery, 'kay, Nadya?"
  2. Okay, Nadya had totally not intended to let it go that far dealing with Adrianna, especially as she was someone who could tie Dane up in knots like that. She'd just been curious what Grim would do or say when put on the spot. He'd done... fine, maybe a little bland, in her consideration, but totally props for the possible flirt. But then Lite Bright sunbeamed her way in and Nadya couldn't help but think about her failed attempt at pulling a fast one on Marius and failing utterly. Risk. Reward. Sometimes for a big payoff, you had to gamble. Problem was, she hadn't been the one to pay the forfeit. It had been their loved ones. She could have cried about it not being fair, but she knew what he father would have said about that. While she did believe that there was a tendency towards Balance, no one ever said it was timely or didn't need help at times, nor that it couldn't be cheated. She hadn't needed Lite Bright's excoriation, having felt enough of a shitheel. She couldn't thank Dane enough for coming to her dad's aid. Then Fisher mentioned the Nekyia and Nadya had felt the air sucked out of her lungs, like her death's breath slipping inexorably through her lips. She'd thought she was over being trapped inside her own mind, but it seemed it wasn't the case, the trauma lingering in the dark corners of her head. The Romani girl couldn't help but wince in sympathy and feline delight as Grim icily tore into Fisher for his blunder. Grim laid out his plan of action and left, followed by Laurie, sunlight after shadow. Fisher trudged out a moment later, looking like death warmed over at the prospect of telling Archie what he'd done. After him, Dale slunk out like a dusky, busty cat on her growling motorcycle. And finally, it felt like Nadya could breathe again. Basking in the deliciousness of the confection Darcy had bestowed on her - it was more of a hot milkshake with several pumps of vanilla and raspberry syrup than mere coffee - she pondered where they'd already gone and where they were going, trying to track down the bitchy witches as they witchly bitched about town, trying to fit the pieces together, enough to get an idea of what the con looked like. She got a text from Fisher, updating her about the dead birds being found at the pier. She furrowed her sharp brows, then swiped to Google maps, pinning locations. One point, a second... The Rule of Three, three witches... "Then we should go in pairs, at least, Aquaboy," Nadya countered, with a grin, draining the last of her 'coffee' and popping up to her feet. "You go join Fisher at the pier. Rae-Rae, you're with me." "Why am I going with Fisher?" Austin asked, not that he was opposed, just out of vague but habitual caution whenever Nadya proposed... almost anything. Nadya gave him a silver-eyed stare of seeming genuine puzzlement. "Dude? Pier? Water? Splish-splash?" She pointed at him with a pair of fingers. "Aquaboy. Kinda obvious, don'tcha think?" Austin sighed and began to shrug on his coat. "And where are you girls going?" he asked just as Rachel said, "And where are we going?" "Not sure, yet, but I'll let you both know when we get there. C'mon, Rae-Rae, we have our own sleuthing to do before joining the others at Harmony Grove. We can get Wolf on the way." Grunting in belligerent resignation, Rachel followed the short, wiry felony in oddly silently clomping heels out of the Drip. "Seriously, Nadya, where are we going?" "Three witches, right?" Nadya said, flashing her phone at the taller Scion. "Right..." "Two things of the weird the others are checking out. We're gonna look for a third. The other two happened here and here." Nadya showed the points on a Google Map on her iTeru III. "Looking for patterns and shit, I figure they are witching themselves a triangle. Why else hit places as random as the pier and Mrs. Cunningham's garden - I mean, unless that's where they are hanging out and they are oozing out radioactive protoplasm or junk. If we're looking at a roughly equilateral triangle, the third point would be here, or here. The middle of Salem Harbor seems unlikely, so let's try the other one first, hey? It that doesn't pan out, well, Aquaboy can check the other. Or at least get us a boat." The tall blonde gave the sleek brunette a weird look. "What?" "You know what an equilateral triangle is?" "Oh, go drown yourself in the sludge of the Nile. I'm fine in math. You got a nose for guilt, I got eyes for crime scenes, and Wolf just has a nose. For smelling stuff. Let's see if we can scrounge ourselves up a clue on what's going on."
  3. Even Nadya was at a lost for words, for a moment at least. Dude was big. True, Spearfinger had been taller, but super fugly, with stony, scaling skin that desperately needed some top line moisturizer. But Maurice looked way more, er, human, which made his sheer mass even more imposing. He kinda looked like a bigger, buffer, Terry Crews, y'know, except for the dreads and single eye. And Nadya couldn't help but wonder with fascinated unease what he was packing in his cargo shorts that were entirely too close to face level. Good on you, Archie, good on you. Maurice wasn't a dwarf, but Nadya wasn't disappointed. Nadya gave herself a little shake then craned her neck to meet his eye, a cheery grin spreading wide on her face. What did he use for a pair of shades when he went out in the sun? "My man! Maurice!" Nadya crowed, holding out (and up) a hand for a fist bump. Maurice seemed bemused, but obliged, the disparity in sizes of their fists delightfully ludicrous. "We da - we are the kids, fer sure. Archie gave us your name, but neglected a few details. I'm Nadya, and these are my Band mates." She quickly gave the Rastafarian Cyclops the names of the rest of the party, then reached into her satchel and pulled out one of the bigger shards of what appeared to be pure ruby, and letting him see there were more. The shattered remnants of the heart of Cherokee myth that had been way too real. But then again, all the myths seemed to be. "And we're here 'bout this, big guy," Nadya said, holding up the shard for Maurice's inspection, though ready to snatch it back in case he tried to swipe it. "The Heart of Spearfinger. Archie said you're the man to make something out of it."
  4. The delight on Nadya's face wasn't just for picturing a hive-ridden particular daughter of Aphrodite. If Fisher - and most others - thought study was anathema - another word-a-day word - to her, that was more than fine with her. And was the intent. While admittedly, her studying at school was... inconsistent at best, you couldn't pull off a good con or heist without at least some planning, even if you had to expect to adapt when things inevitably went wrong. “Yeah, well, you know, that’s just, like, your opinion, man.” Nadya glanced back over her shoulder at the ancient arithmetician. "Just one more teensy thing, Archie, Maurice, yeah, Titanspawn, got it, but what exactly is he?" The svelte and wiry young woman perked up on her perch on the edge of the table, giving the impression of clapping excitedly without actually moving her hands. "Is he dwarf? Like an actual dwarf, not a little person? He's a dwarf, isn't he? We should at least bring him a case of beer or something."
  5. In which Eddy and Dixie talk to Ian A. A. Watson about his latest projects, including some more details on the recently-announced Trinity Continuum: Anima! Faxanadu on NES Streaming video games on Twitch More farty horns and Dixie’s Wikipedia Corner Ian reveals his middle names! We remember the rough times we had recording episode 4 How things have been in the past couple of years Ian is still a well-known shitposter Trinity Continuum: Anima The Crash Surprising inspirations Internet shit MMOs have their own language and cultural impact The Glass brain implant Different things to try in Trinity as a result The importance of media touchstones Why it’s not set during the Aberrant War M20 Victorian Mage How Ian’s evolved as a creative Interpreting Matthew’s dreams Impostor syndrome and making something with your hands LINKS: Faxanadu: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Faxanadu Matthew’s Twitch: https://twitch.tv/matthewdawkins Jay and Miles X-Plain the X-Men: https://www.xplainthexmen.com Mamoru Samuragochi: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mamoru_Samuragochi Trinity Continuum Core Rulebook: https://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/260788/Trinity-Continuum-Core-Rulebook?affiliate_id=548232 Otherland: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Otherland Mass Effect Franchise: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mass_Effect X-Com Franchise: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/X-COM Technocracy Reloaded Kickstarter: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/200664283/m20-technocracy-reloaded
  6. Nadya gave the newest member of their Band a quick once over, impish grin on her face and silvery-grey eyes alight. Chin cupped in her hands, elbows propped on the makeshift table, her hips rolled fluidly from side to side as she shifted her weight. "Don't mind Grumps over there, Dale. Grim doesn't know how to party and is now getting thrown into the deep end." Her grin widened and she flashed Grim a teasing wink. "Sink or swim time, Loquacious One." "Loquacious?" Grim drawled. His other eye was as grey and barren and unyielding as an overcast sky over a coal-mining town in winter. "I read," Nadya asserted with the slightest pout. Grim's grey eye seemed to convey extra... greyness. Nadya chuffed in irritation. "I have one of those word-a-day calendars, 'kay?" Grim's chin lowered, his gaze unwavering, as though looking at her over a pair of bifocals. Nadya rolled her eyes as she stood up and stretched. "So, I only got to February fourteenth, what about it?" Nadya sauntered lithely about the table, chunky-heeled boots barely a whisper, and sidled up to Dane. She hooked an arm through his, and reached up with the other to ruffle his blond mane. "It's a good thing you're yummy-cute and have the best herb, Burritosson." Dane smiled as though he'd just won an Oscar. "Wanna go with me, Moonbaby? We can do the couples thing like Darce and the Fishman. You'd make a foooine taco." Nadya laughed, then leaned around him to stick her tongue out at Grim. "I ain't figuring out nothing, Grim." Fisher snicked and Nadya shot him a friendly finger without looking back. "I have my costume ready to go. And yes, it is tight and super slooty. And has a hint of Salem folklore, for that little bit class. I'm going as Abigail Breslin-" "Williams," Fisher and Darcy said in saccharine synchronicity. "-Williams, one of Salem's most famous witches." Nadya's grin barred some teeth as her turned her attention towards Dale and Rachel. "And I aim to misbehave. So whaddaya say Rae-Rae, Dale, wanna join me in painting targets on our backs to try and draw out these wicked bitches?"
  7. Nadya's pencil beat a rapid tattoo on her binder, eagerly waiting for the last class of the day to end. Her page of notes had devolved into a hieroglyphic representation of some Rube Goldbergian monstrosity used to purloin... something. Nadya wasn't a particularly good artist. It might have been a document stating she owned Amazon entirely or a reverse giraffe. Her eyes were on the clock rather than her doodles. She swore she'd seen the minute hand move backwards a tick - which would have been far from the strangest thing she'd ever seen, especially recently. The bell rang and Nadya was out of the door before the chime finishing chiming, a dusk-coloured sirocco in chunky heels, her phone practically materializing into her hand. The teacher was death on students who played with their phones during class, and Nadya hadn't been about to risk having a gift from her mother taken away, even for a few hours, maybe a day. Beyond that, no phone! Shudder. Neither she nor Grimes had a shift at From Dusk Til Pawn today, and she was pretty sure the rest of the Band was free too. They'd better be, or they'd miss out on Big Fugly's broken ruby heart. It was time to talk to talk to Archie about the shards leftover from their take down of the Cherokee Spearfinger. Okay, okay, it was waaaay past time. She hadn't been hoarding them for herself. Really, honest. She'd just been... y'know, trying to see if she could figure out what to do with them on her own. Independent Study. It hadn't gone too well. Okay, it hadn't gone at all, since all her ideas about research on this stuff lead right back to Archie... which was right where she was ending up going, anyway. <We got some mats. Gotta find out where to go with them to make them into stuff. Meet up at Archie's> Nadya tapped out briskly on her phone then texted to the Band. Actually, Grimes hadn't even been there, but it would seem kinda rude and backhanded to uninvite him now, especially since she was his ride today. Can you say awkward? He could get the smallest piece of shattered ruby monster heart. When Nadya started getting close to the rather too impressive library for Salem High, she slowed her brisk pace to one more lackadaisical and aimless, them slipped inside while no one was looking. She couldn't be seen to be wanting to go to the library, even if she had been going there a lot more often as of late. She ghosted through the stacks to where Archimedes laired. "Hey, Archie! You around?" Nadya trilled lightly as she looked around for the erstwhile librarian and god. "You said come see you if I - we - wanted to start on that 'independent study' you mentioned."
  8. I was about to post or PM for details about said guy. If you had already sent me some, I'll admit to completely forgetting about them.
  9. I'll stick around. As an aside, guys, Artemis might be just a tad, a smidge really, miffed, about something that may or may not have gone missing, that in a roundabout way, if you squint really hard, could be considered the fault of someone in particular. I don't wanna name names...
  10. Nadya's lips twitched in a small smirk when Grim's eyes went back to the phone, but her pale gaze lingered on the pale scar over his eye, wondering again how it had happened. She opened her mouth to ask, but when Grim looked back up at her and nodded, proclaiming his satisfaction, she nodded back, mouth spreading in retail grin. She enjoyed browsing as much as the next girl, but the best customers were the ones who knew what they wanted and didn't dither of decision for a thousand years. You usually couldn't upsell them, but on the other hand, you could make ten sells for every dithering. "Alright then, good choice," Nadya said. "Let me grab you some of the accessories and get you rung up." Nadya disappeared behind the counter for a moment, then popped back up with a cardboard box full of electronic brick-a-brac. "Charger for the phone, phone case - do you want Minions or Bedazzled?" she said, holding up a case in either hand for his inspection, grin broad and eyes sparkling. Grim's stoic bland expression still seemed to radiate affront. "Nah, I'm kidding, I wouldn't wish these on Mercedes and her Pink Slip Amazons... well, yeah, I totally would. Here, black." With practiced motions, she slipped on the textured rubber and plastic over the phone and handed back to Grim, then began digging in the box once more. "Power-cord for the Chromebook." She plugged it into the Chromebook to make sure it fit. "Oops, not that one, this one-" She was interrupted by a rap at the cash counter. She and Grim both looked around to find László hanging his cane on the counter once more. "No, be giving the boy the newest Chromebook we are having. Same price. He is missing much, and is having much to catch up on." Nadya raised her brows in surprise. "I swear, he has hearing like, um - I don't know who the Egyptian Heimdall is, so, like, Heimdall's," Nadya whispered. The shop was quiet save for the soft skirling of violins over the speakers, but they hadn't been speaking particularly loud. "He always knows everything going on in the shop." Grim gave Nadya a muted shadow of a smile, then met László's gaze directly. "I appreciate the offer sir, but it isn't necessary. This one is sufficient." "Bah!" László waved a dismissive hand. "I am expecting more than only sufficient from my daughter, and I am thinking you are expecting more from yourself, boy." He gave Nadya an assertive, pointed nod before his eyes shifted back to Grim. "Speaking of the sufficiency, my little daughter-" "I'm not that short," Nadya huffed, putting away the two Chromebooks she had brought of for Grim's inspection and pulled out another, a little bigger than the others, and while clearly a newer model, the lid showed the scuffs of hard use or little care. She pulled out another box, slim, the corners beaten and opened it up, showing neatly arranged cords with twist ties, and styrofoam packing, leaving a perfect fit for the laptop. "-is not being sufficient to be helping me with the shop, she being often busy with other... things." Nadya blew a raspberry. "I am thinking I am needing more help. Are you being interested? You are being the growing boy still, I am seeing the signs, and I am thinking you can be using more of the money. Some of your wages, it would be going to make up the difference."
  11. "Just so. It is being best not to believing half what you are reading, and little more what you are seeing," László agreed with amiably gruff amusement, a sage nod, and a twinkle in his eye. Behind him, Nadya shook her head vehemently over her father's shoulder, trying to convey silently to Grim that her father wasn't in the know about Gods and Titans and Monsters, but Grim suspected László caught the motion, though he gave no sign of it beyond a slight curve of his mouth. The elder Lunălescu picked up his cane and swung it behind him without looking, giving Nadya a light swat on the thigh. "My milaya doch', help the boy finding the things he is looking for," László to his daughter, hanging his cane off the edge of the counter once more. "Me, and am doing the sorting of the jewels for what to sell, and what is for the keeping, so that those they are meaning much may recover them." He gave Grim another scrutinizing glance, then looked over his shoulder at Nadya. "And you, Nadezhda, be a good host and be offering him a sandwich. You are being as skinny as the rail, boy." Nadya rolled her eyes in exasperation, but when her father shifted, a demure expression came over face so quick, Grim began to doubt he had even seen the roll of eyes. She swiftly finished her sandwich, then picked up the tray. "Of course, Tată," she said docilely, and her father snorted, clearly not fooled. She skipped down the two steps from the counter area, and offered the tray to Grim. "There's egg salad, tuna, and ham and swiss," Nadya said, indicating each lightly toasted sandwich with a nod. Only one half of the tuna sandwich remained on the wooden tray. "Grab one, oh Grim one, and let's see about getting you hooked up and online." Grim hesitated for a moment then picked up the other half of the tuna sandwich and flashed the Lunălescus his reserved, understated smile. Nadya gave him a mock pout before she slid the tray back onto the counter, then beckoned him to follow her with a pair of waving fingers. "Someone has good taste. This way." Nadya led Grim to a counter at the back of the shop, what passed for the electronics section, and took the two steps up in a hop. She glanced down the glass counter top, then gave a Grim a quick, considering look that almost made him want to check his pockets to find out what was missing. Then she pulled out two transparent trays of cellphones. Strips of masking tape indicated the price range, 40-99 dollars in one tray, 100-199 in the other. Nadya walked further down the counter and leaned on it, the two steps up bringing her eyes up just a bit higher than Grim's. "What're looking for in a laptop, Grim? Video games or video editing, big screen, or just something for homework and wikipedia?" "Research and homework mainly," Grim admitted. A shrug. "Entertainment secondary, I suppose. Why?" "Dude, you are so wrong 'bout that, but I got you. I could get you a good deal on a gaming laptop. Great specs, 19 inch screen, whole buncha games on it still, but it's almost as thick as a phonebook and weighs as much as Wolf, with a battery life of about two minutes." Nadya tapped on the glass counter pointing out the beastly laptop with a biohazard decal on the lid, then she pointed to two other smaller, slimmer models, one newer than the other. "But it sounds like what you want is a Chromebook. A hundred for this one. They're perfect for surfing the net and youtube. And homework, I guess. They're kinda between a tablet and a PC. Talk to Beth at school, and she get even get Netflix working on them, probably update the operating system on the older models," "I don't have an Netflix account." "Pshaw! I don't either. Lotta people do though and don't even come close to their device limit. I can get you a password or two." She pulled out the Chromebooks for him to look at then reached and slid the trays of cellphones over between them. "And these are probably our best deals on phones. The newest stuff is practically full price 'cuz fanboys are gonna iPhone, no matter the price. The Nokias might be old, but are nearly invincible. We actually have a pair of Blackberries left, if you want buttons, then a whole bunch of touchscreens." She rifled through the cheaper tray and pushed one of the smartphones with a bigger screen to the side. "If you don't mind a crack on the screen than you can barely see unless you look at it at the right angle, we got a newer Samsung for under a hundred." Nadya tapped the wall behind her, at product hanging from pegs. "I'll even throw in an SD card for more storage. Give them a look over, I'll be right back." Nadya scooted back to the cash counter, grabbing another half of sandwich, ham and swiss this time, and her mug of coffee, then sauntered back to the electronics counter and her newest Bandmate.
  12. The pawn shop was worn, but well tended. If the industrial red and black carpet was faded and threadbare in places and the shelves aged and scratched, the floor was still swept clean and the tempered glass of the display cases was clear. The place was organized with just a hint of comfortable disarray, the commercial equivalent to a lived-in den. Several wooden bins overflowed with books marked at a dollar a piece. Instruments hanging from the ceiling by one wall weren't quite arranged by size or type. A display of carved and blown glass figures only had a semi-sense of order to it. On the other hand, the small array of guns behind the sales counter was very neatly arranged in locked display cases. The sales counter to the left of the entrance itself was raised by a pair of steps, giving anyone behind it a clear view over the entire shop floor. At the moment, sitting behind the counter was a middle-aged man, a bit on the swarthy side with raven black hair peppered with grey and several days growth of salt and pepper stubble. His bright grey eyes were sharp and incisive, but bracketed by laugh lines. If not classically handsome, he had roguish good looks that might have belonged to a Star Wars freighter pilot or in a heist film. He looked up at the ting-a-ling of the bell over the door then glanced at the rangy young man who entered. Not perceiving anything suspicious or duplicitous in Grim, László gave him a friendly a nod, but let him look around to his own content. If they boy needed any help, he would ask for it. László went back to sorting some rings and bits of jewelry in some fashion Grim couldn't determine off-hand. He noted the handle of what appeared to be a cane hanging on the edge of the counter. Grim was browsing for while, dithering on making a decision with his limited funds when he caught the sound of footsteps coming down stairs from beyond the sales counter. A young woman backed through a doorway, gracefully carrying a tray that held a plate of sandwiches and a teapot in one hand, the other holding a large mug. When she turned around, Grim realized it was Nadya... he thought. He'd never seen her looking so... domestic. Her hair was held back by a red, white, and blue kerchief, save for a few wavy locks that dangled free to frame her face. She was wearing yoga pants and an oversized Boston Red Sox sweater that slouched off one shoulder, the sleeves long enough to have cover her hands. Her fingers were free of any rings, though a small one still pierced her brow and she had a small stud in her nose. And she wasn't wearing heels, but a pair of broken-in old slip-on Sketchers. Nadya placed the tray on the counter by her father - side by side, Grim caught the family resemblance - and poured him a cup of tea. The two of them spoke him softly in a mix of at least two languages, neither of them English, before Nadya grabbed a triangular half of a sandwich and took a sip from her almost ludicrously big mug with Calvin and Hobbes on the side with the quote: 'If good things lasted forever, would we appreciate how precious they are?' She took a bite of her sandwich when she realized there was someone in the pawn shop, her eyes widening slightly when she realized who it was. If she was embarrassed being caught at work, out of her usual fashion sense, Nadya gave no sign of it, though she quickly swallowed her bite of sandwich before offering Grim a grin that was between friendly and professional. "Hiya, Grim. What brings you to From Dusk Till Pawn today?"
  13. Nadya's mobile face split in a wide grin as Grim slipped the amulet on the thong around his neck. There was a slight, questioning tilt to her head as she eyed the thong. It wasn't a common silver or gold or steel chain, or braided leather, but something else. And was that a tooth? The Stone Bitch hadn't had teeth that big. She arched a dark brow at the introverted Scion, but if wanted to say another about the tooth or where he'd been, he'd reveal in his own time. "Cu plăcere*," Nadya said with a small wave, her smile growing more amused and a bit teasing. "Gotta ask, if you met your old one-eyed dad, does he look more Hopkins or more McShane? Because I think Ian McShane does the better job, just saying, but maybe that's because can swear on Starz, but it's a big no-no in the MCU." She quickly scarfed down another donut and washed it down with the rest of her coffee, then sauntered over and tossed the box of donuts - oops, donut - on the grew wood of the weather-beaten picnic table. She took a seat, perched on the top, a planted a boot on the bench seat as she crossed her legs. "About the motives and intentions of our dieting--" "Diefic," corrected at least three of the others. "That's what I said, Deific. Our Deific folks, well, I'm with Fisher on this one. Who cares why they're doing whatever they're doing. It might matter to them, but it doesn't have to matter to us, or matter much, anyway. We find our own motivations instead of relying on theirs. And along the way, we have some fun, cuz otherwise, what's point? Oh!" Nadya bent and began digging around in her satchel. "I got something for you too, Rae-Rae. Didn't see anything Vidar-y, and not even a good copy of Thor's hammer, but it's something. Sorry, guys, vikings are the shit right now in showbiz - did any of you see Gods of Egypt? Shudder - but I swear, I'll find you all something too." "It isn't stolen, is it?" Rachel commented, more than a hint of resignation in her tone at what she was sure the answer would be. "Rae-Rae! Technically, you can't steal from a dead guy. Seriously, it's a thing. Ask museums," Nadya protested nonchalantly. "And the collection of artifacts were just dug up out of the ground, weren't even going to museums or anything. Just rich people selling them off to other rich people - Sorry, Laurie - so they can hide them in private collections and show them off to friends. They won't miss one. Or two. Besides, they're insured... Probably. Ah-hah! Here it is." Nadya leaned over from her seat on the picnic table and held out the worked and worn pendant balanced on her nimble fingers. "It's supposed to be a Valkyrie. I mean, I guess it sorta looks like Tessa Thompson, a little, but whatever. Valkyries were badass battle bitches, right? Well, you're our badass battle bitch, Rae-Rae."
  14. <I'll get there when I can> Nadya had texted Fisher back as she had been changing out of a pale grey business suit. <I'm down in Boston.> Okay, that was a tiny lie. She had been in Boston. Now, she was standing in a Dunkin' Donuts bathroom, pulling off a strawberry-blond wig and shaking out her sable hair, hints of purple still in it. She peered at herself in the mirror above the sink. Her eyes felt grainy, but her face looked fresh and clean, scrubbed free of the make-up that had made her look older. Gods, good and bad, I need more coffee. She hadn't slept since the night before the Dance and while her heritage gave astonishing stamina, the lack of sleep was beginning to take a toll. There was something off about Fisher's text. If Rae-Rae had called a meeting, she'd have texted or called them herself. Fortunately, she was close, she could beat them to the Stables. But there was something she needed to do first. She stuffed the remnants of her disguise into her nondescript bag, slipped on her short leather jacket, then sauntered out of the bathroom. The lady waiting to go next gave her a startled look - the Nadya who exited hardly looked like the Nadya who had entered. Nadya practically skipped up to the counter. "Hi! I need a box of fifty donut holes - just jelly, cinnamon, and glazed blueberry. And an extra large coffee, with, like, a ton of sugar, and if you squeeze in extra caffeine, that would be awesome." ~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~~*~~*~~*~~*~~*~~ "Oh, suck it up, buttercup," Nadya groused, sliding around from where she had been lurking behind the trunk of an old tree. She ignored Grim's flat, gimlet glare to stuff a blueberry glaze donut in her mouth and wash it down with a big gulp of coffee. "That lone wolf shit plays great on TV, and the edgelords eat it up in the comics, suckling on the pain of their tragic backstory, yet struggling stoically on their own, so they don't have to feel that pain again." Nadya made a fake heaving sound. "In real life, lone wolves die alone, and nobody notices. Or cares." Nadya tilted the box of donut holes towards Grim in offering, but when he made no move towards it, she just an insouciant shrugged. "No one is saying you haven't been dealt a shitty hand. But the game never ends when there's still a chance at the turn of a friendly card. And dude, you've been given a whole new hand to play." She gestured at Fisher with her coffee. "You think we're only interested in you because of your godblood? Pfft! You ain't special in that. You think I'd be friends with Fisher otherwise? Or that Rae-Rae would be besties with me? None of our Band hung together before we found out what we were, but yeah, the godblood changed things for us. Forced us to look beyond our differences, gave us the opportunity to see others in a new light. That opportunity is still there, all you - we, too, for that matter - have to reach for it." Nadya shifted, tucking the box of donut holes under her arm and nodded at the book in Grim's hand. "I don't know what all Rae-Rae said to you, but if you think you have to be a 'good' stray to stick around, don't worry 'bout it. You just have to stand by us, and Rae-Rae will fight for you no matter how 'bad' of a stray you are or how much she grumbles. Or had much shit hits the fan. Hells bells, she's family now, sorta, isn't she? A second cousin or niece or whatever, I didn't read all the viking stuff yet. Don't tell Mr. S. Family can be by blood, and can be by choice - we can be the latter, but Rae-Rae can be both, if you want it, warts and arguments and all." Grim tilted his head very slightly, viewing Nadya from a different angle. "'Sides, I seem to remember the Norse gods don't fight Reggae-rockapooloza or whatever alone. We're just at the part when the Avengers are meeting for the first time and fight. Let's skip that part - it's been done sooo many times. I mean, we don't have a pair of hunky Chrises on our team, but when it's time to throw down, we don't let any us stand alone. Oh!" Nadya juggled her coffee and the box of donut holes as she scrounged around in her satchel. "I found something I thought you'd like when I went down to Boston this morning. Catch!" Something tarnished and metallic flicked in the afternoon light and Grim didn't have to make much of an effort as it landed in his hand. "It's an artifact dug up from some old viking village. 'Spose to be Odin. I thought you'd like it." "What were you doing in Boston?" Fisher not-quite-demanded. "Things," Nadya replied blithely. "I'd have picked something up for you too - and the others - but the auction house didn't have anything, er, Japanesey." Grim fingered the old, rough, amulet, then glanced back up to Nadya, pale eye and green alike hard and unfathomable. "You think a... trinket will buy me off?" His voice was bland and cool. "A bribe to stay or an apology for your leader's words?" Nadya looked genuinely hurt, which she quickly tried to hide behind downing the rest of her coffee. "Laurie is the one who's loaded, she can offer the bribes, if that's what you want. And Rae-Rae can make her own damn apologies - I don't even know what she said to you. I was passing by and saw that and thought you'd like it. Stay or go, I'd thought you'd like something of your - oh damn, forgive me for this - something of your 'God' father. Whether you hate him or haven't made up your mind about him or whatever, it's something you can look at, feel, even if he ain't here."
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