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Amelia Parsons last won the day on April 15 2021

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  1. A text would have been nice... Amelia had some experience with dealing with people about to freak out because of something she'd done. An experience deriving from an inglorious history to be divulged only under the influence, and then while constantly giggling. An experience that informed her on an instinctive, reflexive level. She looked over and up at the newcomer to the room. What had her name been? Maya, her brain reported, serving up a paraphrased summary of Kestrel talking awhile ago. Yes, Maya. She looked a bit worn out, with her dark slacks bearing a day's worth of wrinkles and her off-white blouse starting to sneakily work its way untucked from her beltline. Not a great time to be getting surprises. Some glad-handing was in order. "Maya!" said Amelia in greeting. She popped up to her feet, leaving her phone on the table, and approached a couple of steps...still leaving enough space between them that Maya would have to move towards her before shaking it. "Nice to see you! I am Amelia Parsons, and this is Ravi..." her brain stuttered and stalled on his last name so she quickly paved it over, "...who is from England. We came to help you with your...goblin problem?" Amelia then glanced over at Kestrel, sipping her beer over there, and decided that when there was a bus, it was worth throwing someone under it. "Sorry, I would have gotten your number and let you know, but I assumed someone had already taken care of that. Was not my intention to get sprung on you like this." With a quick cut of her eyes towards Ravi, she finished off with, "Buuuuuuut...glass half full, we do want to help you, even if we are seriously new to this whole...'everything you never believed about the world is real' thing."
  2. For want of anything better to do or say, Amelia went over to Suleman and offered a fingertip to sniff. The cat diffidently stretched out its neck to tap it's cold, slightly moist nose, then gave Amelia a single lick, then flopped back, apparently spent. She gave him a little ear scritch. "So, process of elimination then. I'm not dead, at least not yet. I don't heal particularly fast. So I'm either...a weird mage or a weirder 'fae'...or I'm just a regular girl who's in way over her head." She sighed and went into the kitchen to hunt for a glass to get some water. Cabinets opened, then closed. "I do not know offhand which of those options appeals more. Hey, you guys got any caffeine in the place? Don't really care what it's in. Coffee, tea, soda...whatever you got."
  3. "Right," Amelia chimed in, "and, follow up, is there a way to test for that kind of thing that does not involve getting shot? Because as far as I know I do not heal like that, but I've also never tried to test it that way. So...?" She shrugged.
  4. Amelia perched on the armrest of the couch opposite Ravi's head. Kestrel was doing most of the talking. This 'Mel' guy had been listening pretty closely. Was he not working for Morne too? Maybe this was a new clearance level for him... "So...Kestrel..." she said. "You mentioned each 'type' of supernatural being had it's own watcher...except the vampires up until recently. What about the Chosen though? Do they get picked out of supernatural beings too, or are they just normal folks usually? What does being Chosen mean for them, other than a sudden uptick in the amount of bullets being aimed at them?" Her fingers itched, and she flexed them uncomfortably. How long had it been since she'd had a chance to get on her computers? Not quite twenty-four hours, but getting there. She had her phone, but it was so limited. She had projects going. Feeling this cut off was definitely starting to get to her. They'll be watching my door, but what about the window? Or maybe I can get in from above? Crawlspace? There has to be something I can do...
  5. "Yeah, but she didn't seem too concerned if we understood what's going on," Amelia said. She took a breath and closed her eyes, running her mind's eye back in time. Photographic memory was a myth, and if it wasn't she sure as hell didn't have it...but she could usually hit the high points on her mental tape drive. "She said Ravi and me were 'chosen' for something, and that she was a 'watcher,'" she started. "But she doesn't know who chose us or what we were chosen to do, or why she was a watcher. She also said she needed Mourne's help, and didn't seem too happy about it." Amelia opened her eyes. "D'Sombra's had Ravi following me for a while now, but yesterday it all went to shit when a couple of actual men in black showed up and started doing their best John Woo audition all over the club we were in. Sable pulled our asses out of the fire and took us straight to D'Sombra. Pretty much everything that's happened from that second up until now has been..." she held a hand up a few inches over her scalp, "right about here, in terms how far over my head it is. I've just about gotten on board with the vampire thing and the illuminati. Chosen...watcher...still have no idea where that's going." At that Amelia made her way to one of the barstools up against the counter and sat heavily down on it. She still had no idea what to do, no plan. She was bouncing around like a pinball, and it was eating at her that somewhere along the way she'd completely lost agency, and was at the mercy of forces way beyond her. "I've got a blog," she said to the polished countertop. "I mean, okay, I've done a few shady things but...I'm low profile. No big botnet hacks, no big names; I don't even take money. Why the fuck is this happening?"
  6. "Uh..." Amelia's eyes went from the twiggy ginger dude with a gun to the recently be-pantzed girl with a gun, then back. Neither was much better than the other. She didn't really think she was working FOR anyone, but also recognized this wasn't the time or place to get into the nuance of the situation. That could wait for when bullets weren't in play. "Okay. DeSombra sent us. Sable said she'd talked to you, and she let us know where to go. I'm not exactly 'one of her people' though; I just met them last night." Inspiration flickered and she added, "I have my phone right here if you wanna call in and verify." She did have the presence of mind not to actually make a move to get the phone out though. Then Amelia glanced at Ravi. He was the professional here, right? The long-time righthand henchman? He'd know what to say to make the guns go away.
  7. "I'll let you bounce on the pavement after I hip-check you out the door," Amelia replied amiably as she ducked into the passenger side seat. It was a nice car. She had to admit that, even if only to herself. "You're injured, man. The shark smells blood." Ravi glanced at her, grinning and ready to rejoin, but Amelia had already dug her phone out. Ravi was driving so obviously he wasn't going to call Kestrel, she'd just been giving him shit. Even so she couldn't help but laugh as the morning's conversation played back in her head. "Cursed by goblins. Goblins. That is...somehow the weirdest thing in two days of solid weird things." "You're right. They're as real as cyborgs or immortal women or men who don't die of bullets." Ravi replied with a cheery shrug. "There's probably an explanation for all of it, but until we find it, quibbling over what's possible isn't helping us." He hit the starter, smile spreading as the engine growled into life. "Ahhhh..." he sighed. "And we have expenses cash too, so if you're nice to me I'll take you for a bagel." he grinned as they peeled out of the parking deck. Amelia shook her head at that, "Okay but I have so many questions right now," she said. "Like, are these wimpy green world of warcraft goblins, or like...hot-ass David Bowie goblins? Exactly how much shit does this Maya girl deserve to eat over this? A spoonful of shit, or all of the shit? These are important, hard-hitting questions." Then she added with a grin, "Also you can keep the fucking bagels. We just had breakfast, are you joking?" Her fingers tapped out the numbers as if on autopilot, and she waited for the phone to pick up. "Hey, is this Kestrel? This is Amelia. We're on our way over. ETA...uh...pretty soon. Ten or fifteen minutes maybe."
  8. Amelia held her hands up, palms out, "Hey, I'm on good behavior. I didn't try to pull any of her teeth, or shine my phone light into her eyes to see if she flinches and hisses...see? Good behavior." The two beefsteaks moved in on her then and she sighed and was...not quite pushed out, but was guided out. They weren't mean about it or anything, but she was under no illusions that they wouldn't become as mean as necessary to get the job done. You didn't work for a woman who tore throats and/or tongues out without developing a knack for 'job done, any means necessary.' Which brought to mind a thought. Mutilating workers might have flown back in the day, but in modern times? It wasn't like guys like that couldn't get other jobs. Maybe it was fear of retribution, but fear wasn't loyalty. Ravenna didn't seem dumb enough to let these guys have the run of the place unsupervised if their loyalty wasn't assured. Mind control? Maybe some kind of addiction that she managed? Or did they owe her so big that even losing body parts wasn't enough to shake it? How? Why? As her ghoul, I have inherited some of her power, but never have I been able to master shadows. Amelia found herself wondering what D'Sombra had taken from Sable. Not her tongue, clearly...but something else? She reviewed what she'd learned of this lady in her head, and it wasn't a big list. Sable had dropped something interesting though. Ravenna didn't cast a reflection. How that worked in terms of physics, Amelia couldn't even begin to work out. Light was light. Vision was vision. But maybe not? What if a vampire was more like a ghost, and could be seen through some kind of mental projection? Their solidity a manipulation of forces rather than anything 'real' there. Ugh...no, step away from that. The Sable thing. The fact that she didn't cast a reflection was something she was sensitive about...but then she filled her space with reflective surfaces. Why? Maybe to entrap people into that terrible realization, as an excuse to lash out at them? But...it almost had a feeling of masochism, didn't it? Was she punishing herself for something? Surrounding herself with mirrors she couldn't see herself in, and paintings that she could only see what other people saw. But computers could see her. That was interesting. A digital camera worked, when apparently film didn't. Very interesting. Someone like D'Sombra liked to pull the strings, Amelia guessed. Sable's, these two guys'...her own and Ravi's too. But something was pulling her string. This whole 'chosen' thing. To resolve it she needed someone named Mourne. Someone she didn't want to need, though she hadn't seemed upset so much as resigned. Someone she was having trouble finding. That didn't happen often, Amelia had a feeling. "So who's this Mourne guy?" she tried asking the palookas as they offloaded her at the guest room. The two glanced at each other, then with the slightly overgentle movements of someone who could break things but didn't want to, one reached over and closed the door. Well shit. It was a five star, maybe six star room of course...might as well enjoy it. Amelia threw her clothes on the bed...raided from her apartment probably...and went to go 'freshen up,' which in this case was code for 'lie in a bathtub for too long.' Then she took a shower, because baths...while comfy...always felt a little gross at the end. Like an Amelia stew. Then she went and got dressed in some clean clothes. Just another set of jeans and another T shirt. It wasn't like she had a fancy gown or anything, and frankly wouldn't have felt safe wearing one anyway, between vampire fangs and Ravi's eyefucking. Finally she cautiously poked her head out the door and looked up and down the hallway, to see if the palookas were there. If not...perhaps she'd have a chance to nose around a bit...
  9. "Right. Well. Frau Ackula did say Sable had the 'touch of an angel' so that scans," Amelia said. She folded her arms, then muttered something under her breath and got her phone out. Then she started up a speech-to-text app, repeated what the guy had said as best she could imitate it, and fed THAT into a German-to-English translator. And scowled. "Not German. Or my pronunciation sucks. Or both. Probably both. What did you say? African?" "Afrikaans," Ravi corrected, a little bemused. "But..." "I know," snapped Amelia as she swiped a finger on the phone's screen. "I just...it's going to bug me. Oh. Hey, look at that. Afrikaans. Who knew." Immediately she turned and pointed at Ravi, "And don't say 'me.' I'm onto you." With a chuckle Ravi held his hands up, palms out, jokingly signaling surrender. "Not yet, but give me a little time to heal up and you could be." Amelia scowled again and stuffed her phone away. "So. I am not a hundred percent sure this whole thing isn't just her playing with her food, you should know. Sending you after me, staging an attack that she then rescues us from...manipulating our feelings, making us feel grateful, dependent...it's exactly the kind of thing I'd expect. And this whole 'you've been chosen' thing is simultaneously too vague to be plausible, and too specific to be plausible. Like...she knows it's US who's been chosen, but not by who or for what? Uh huuuh..." She paced away, then back. "Okay. My head's exploding. I need a shower, apparently. I just." For a second Amelia looked at her hands, then shook them as if they were wet, then looked back at Ravi. "Is it weird I'm not freaking out more about this? I feel like it's weird. I mean...maybe it's just shock. Maybe it hasn't sunk in yet. There's definitely some...like...furniture being rearranged upstairs... This could explain a LOT, you know? Assuming it's not some kind of incredibly elaborate disinformation scheme."
  10. Amelia was excited on hearing it, and wouldn't deny it. This was exciting. Too exciting? Like, was it a little glib? Why send only two assassins? Why would they only shoot the people who wouldn't die from getting shot if they were super-engineered mega-assassins? They were, however, the reason that Amelia was now basically at D'Sombra's mercy. No matter what, they represented a threat she couldn't deal with alone. Their existence made Ravenna indispensable to her, so it could be thought of as convenient they'd shown up at the nightclub, and not just sniped her through her apartment window. That went on the back burner. Asking that might close off more questions. She wasn't ready for that yet. There were a lot more questions. ALL the questions. The 'Watcher' thing for example. Was that weird? Did D'Sombra just arise one night from her slumber of death and find that she'd been stamped for re-entry to Disneyland and then realized she was a Watcher now? Or was there another Watcher who swooped down and gave her the spiel and did some kind of Masonic ritual and then stamped her wrist? And...if she was supposed to Watch, how did that work with 'guiding' the Chosen? Wasn't there usually a non-interference clause for this kind of thing? That was about the point where Amelia imagined she could actually smell the burning rubber scent being emitted by her brain. She was veering around, out of control, bouncing from topic to topic. She needed to focus. What was the next most important question? What would keep the spigot open? "All right," Amelia said slowly, "so...that is a lot to unpack...but if you brought me here to guide me then I'll bite. I have super-assassins hunting for me and I don't know who they are or why they want me. I can't go back to my apartment, apparently, and I'm guessing my job's basically out too. So yeah, guide me. There's a quintillion shit-tons more I want to find out about all this, but I have to survive the night first. What the hell do I do next?"
  11. Dying to ask something. Leave it to a vampire to have that sense of humor. She wasn't wrong though. Everything from 'who was the highest ranked vampire in the country,' to 'had vampires assassinated any world leaders' to whether or not they used chemtrails to keep the humans pliable... Vampires were a game-changer. All kinds of things that would have been impossible suddenly weren't. The sudden realignment of belief and disbelief made her head spin like a stiff drink. And more, because Sable had implied 'shifters' too. Were vampires and shifters allies? Or did they war endlessly for control of the world? Were there other factions? But no...there was no telling how long D'Sombra would indulge a Q&A. Start with the most pressing. What would she regret not having asked the most? "Vampires," Amelia said, nodding at Ravenna. Then she glanced over at the couch. "Ghouls. Shifters?" Her eyes returned to the looming vampiress. "And me. Where do I fit into this, and why does it involve guys attacking me in nightclubs?"
  12. "I'm not drunk enough for this," Amelia complained weakly. "Things don't usually get this fucked up until I've had least three shots." And while it was true that she'd sobered up an upsettingly large amount since the Terminators (disinformation; showing us the truth in ways that make us dismiss it as fiction) had shown up, her thoughts were still slippery enough not to clump together in perfectly coherent ways. Underworld (vampires and werewolves but she didn't say werewolf she said shifter...more than one kind?) reference...lots of pop culture references too, for a 300 year old. And now a vampire wanted to 'have a word' with her. A vampire named D'Sombra. Because obviously a vampire would be named Of Shadows (they hide in plain sight, secure in our disbelief). This had all started when she'd started digging around that bootleg footage. It couldn't be a coincidence. That's when Ravi had first started sniffing around. And when she'd started augering in to try to breach, that's when Arnie and Dolph showed up with their Phase Plasma Rifles In The 40 Watt Ranges. Or...maybe just regular guns. She didn't really know how guns worked. If 'Miss D'Sombra' had wanted, she could have plucked Amelia off the street anytime...maybe even out of her apartment. Instead she'd waited for the other side to show their hand. That was the tipoff...that's how she knew Amelia had hit some dirt. "Those guys at the club," she said, "the ones that came after me...is it just ME they're after, or...fuck..." Amelia looked up at the car's ceiling. There was a scuff on it. Maybe someone tall had bonked their head on a bump. That brought a little chuckle to her. "...exactly how suicidal would stopping off at my apartment be, is what I'm asking. I left something cooking. I'm pretty sure it's what your boss is after."
  13. On seeing Sable's feat of regeneration, Amelia's blood went cold. She sat back in her seat, trying to work out what the smart move was. The doors were unlocked, and the car was moving at city speeds. Wait for a red light and bolt? And hope that whoever had come after them was either after Ravi, not her, or that they'd lost them by now? But then, best case scenario, she'd never know what the hell this was all about. Best case! She'd have another near-miss, a moment where she'd brushed up against something hidden, something more, and then flinched back. Maybe this wasn't the time for smart. Maybe this was the time for crazy. Amelia could do crazy. "Okay," she said, breathing hard as she reacted to the succession of shocks, "Okay. I'm alive, you're alive, everyone's alive. I have so many questions! Like...who are YOU? Alien? Lizard person? ...some kind of government experiment? And who were those guys coming after us?! Because that was not Big Pharma at work there! I mean, I figured maybe someone gets into my place, breaks my decoy computer...maybe a thug or something tries to mess me up... Not two guys with guns shooting up a CLUB! Were they after Ravi?? Because that might make sense, if you're an alien or a supersolider and he's like...junior grade alien or supersoldier...and..." Even as she went on, Amelia accepted Ravi's head onto her lap, because he'd been shot and she wasn't a monster. "I just want to know what's going on," she finished, trying to meet Sable's eyes in the rearview mirror. "Is this a...you'd have to kill me if you told me thing? Because honestly right now...I think I could live with that."
  14. Amelia was trying to keep pressure around the wound and looking frantically around for something she could use as a bandage. She looked up, harried, at Sable when the other woman spoke up. "This is far from a good evening, are you joking?" she snapped. "We...okay okay, there's a hospital not far from here. Uh...uh..." Amelia looked out of the window, trying to get a sense of where they were. If she was still drunk she couldn't feel it, but that buzz had been replaced by the slippery mental slope of panic. "I think...left, up there. Next light." Finally she settled for just wadding up Ravi's shirt over the bullet injury and bearing down on it, wincing as she did. "I know it hurts, I'm sorry, but your blood really needs to stay inside you right now..."
  15. Amelia's forehead and nose squinched a little as she tried to think through the noise of the wobbling universe and process what Ravi was saying. It sort of sounded like she was sort of right and sort of wrong, but...what was that middle part again? When Ravi looked away though, she couldn't help but follow his eyes. At first there was just...people, crossing to and fro in front of her lowered sightline. But then there was a break in the crowd, and she felt like she'd been plunged into icewater. The fuzz was washed to the side of her brain, giving her a moment of clarity. Ravi felt a hand slap into his, and a tug of weight as Amelia hauled herself up. "Okay, I don't know if you're going to kill me, but they definitely will. Tell me you have a way out of this." He gripped her hand tightly and looked around for the restroom symbols. On seeing them he tightened his grip until it was nearly painful. "Maybe. Stay with me no matter what happens." Then they were off, with Ravi practically dragging Amelia along as she tried to get used to the pace he was setting.
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