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World of Darkness: Attrition - A Truly Long Night [complete]


Jeremy

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June 30, 2009

9:00 pm

"You sure about that?" Jeremy asked into the cell phone, quite worried about what he was hearing. The person at the other end was a Beast sent to investigate the info that the freehold had dug up about "Rooster13", and the accumulated buildup of multiple months of investigation had him on edge.

"Alright!" he snapped, after hearing the sharp answer. "Right," he murmured, "thanks. See you." Then he hung up, feeling quite aware of the connection between the fanaticism of the men who'd killed Dash, and that of the people who'd brought them in. Hacking the website's chat, and then following the man narrowed down had brought disturbing discoveries to the fore.

Zealots make more zealots. Once again, he dialed Adrian, quietly. Hopefully, they'd be able to make it a long night for this group of Hunters...

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Moss turned his steak over in the skillet as it finished sealing on one side, "I haven't heard anything much from Adrian for quite a while. As far as I know he is still about somewhere, just busy with his own things. I take it you need some support on something? I can ring around and see who I can get, what's your timescale?"

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"I would say the sooner the better, but this will require some extended planning. If there are any other lupines or vampires who'd like to take on these Hunters, call them. The situation is serious. If we can meet tonight, that's even better." Jeremy took a breath. "Really, don't dawdle."

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Jeremy bit his lip and thought for a moment before replying. "Anywhere between 10:45 to 11:15 pm, I guess. Side entrance of the Amphora. I'll be there waiting. If no one can make it tonight, I'll figure out tomorrow." That should allow them privacy.

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"Ok, I'll be there, and whoever else I can scare up at short notice. See ya then."

Hanging up Moss grabbed a knife and fork and quickly ate his supper before looking through his mobile's phone book to get the relevant numbers.

Amber was first, but after a few rings it switched to her Voicemail.

"Amber, Moss, I know someone who has a lead on some of the hunters that shot Sarah back at New Year. He wants to meet people interested in helping take them down. If you are interested we're meeting at the side entrance of the Amphora between 10:45 and 11:00pm."

Ariel was next, "Hi, it's Moss....Yeah I'm fine, but somethings come up. Someone I know has a lead on the guys who shot at us back at New Year. If you're interested we're meeting at the side entrance of the Amphora about 11 tonight...No, I don't know much more than that at the moment. Anyway, I've got others to call, bye."

Dec, as usual didn't answer and so Moss just left a brief message on his answerphone.

"Moss here at 9pm on the 30th June. Got a lead on the hunters. Meet at the side entrance of the Amphora at 2300 hours tonight for more information."

By 9:45 he had made all the calls he could think of that would do any good. If Jeremy hadn't been able to get a hold of Adrian there was little point him trying, which only left the Vampire with the most interest in the Hunters, the one who had actually been shot by them, Sarah Deadwolf. To get the message to her Moss got changed into his Dedicated clothes, and after looking the house he shifted into his wolf form and headed down the drive.

It was only a matter of a few minutes before Moss arrived at the nearest edge of the area that Sarah claimed as her territory, sitting at the northern edge he put back his head and gave a brief howl, keeping it as pure wolf as he could #Lone Wolf seeks company#. It wasn't exactly how he'd have preffered to say it, but wolf was even more limited in vocabulary than what the People used in that form.

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It wasn't long before an answering call went out, a long thin howl that his sensitive ears could hear as something slightly unlike that of a living wolf.

#Stay. Coming.#

Out from the trees loped a familiar form. Approaching, it gave careful looks all around before changing, shifting upward in a way somehow unlike his own, until before him stood the human-like form of Sarah.

"Moss? What's the word? Don't usually have you howling at my bounds." Even though your pack has my territory surrounded, she left unsaid as a silent rue.

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With equal caution Moss checked the surroundings and moved to a place that was not readily overlooked before shifting back to his human form.

"Hi Sarah, I got a call tonight from someone I met through Adrian. He has a lead on the guys who shot you here in the park when we first met. He's asked me to get together a crew to discuss and do something about them and thought that you would want in."

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The Dead-Wolf's eyes didn't literally go red. As far as Rorx knew, that wasn't something the vampire could do, short of a very sloppy meal eaten upside down. But they did a very fair impression, her brow coming together in a determined look above orbs that fairly shone in the moonlight.

"Yeah," she said in a half-growl. "I want in. Take me to this guy."

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Moss nods, "Yeah I thought you'd feel like that. He's asked for anyone interested in helping out to meet at the Amphora about 11. It won't take an hour to get there, but there is no real harm in being early."

He turns and starts walking in the appropriate direction, "By the way, he's not like either of us, he's something else again. From what I can make out it's something to do with the Fae, if you've heard of them?"

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Meanwhile at 10:00 pm...

Jeremy walked into the Amphora, pulling open the side door after unlocking it. The place was closed early this night, which made excellent privacy for the meeting. He was dressed in a light jacket, and wore gloves. It didn't hurt to be too careful. He also had a shopping bag held in his right hand.

Heading through the rooms, he entered the room he kept in case of needing to sleep in a pinch. He put down the plastic bag. From it, he quietly took out a small leather case, and opened it.

Carefully, he took out his other purchase. Several sharp kitchen cutting knives. Solemnly, he placed them in the case, zipped it up, and he attached the case to his belt.

To be completely honest, if he was going into a fight, he'd need a weapon or two.

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At 9:30 pm...

Dec checked his messages as soon as he walked in the door from his evening patrol / run. It didn't take long: his social circle was not so large or active that his voicemail took up a lot of digital space. In fact there was just one message there tonight.

"Moss here at 9pm on the 30th June. Got a lead on the hunters. Meet at the side entrance of the Amphora at 2300 hours tonight for more information."

Dec grunted under his breath, then went to get changed.

****

Ten-thirty found him slouching at the end of the alley containing the Amphora's side entrance, wearing a faded and ragged grey sweatshirt and some equally ratty loose-fit jeans. They had two things to recommend them as garb: they were cheap, worth a couple of bucks from the Salvation Army store, and they were baggy enough to shroud his solidly-muscled frame and, if necessary, to let him shift to Dalu form.

Under casual inspection, the Rahu looked like a bum hunkering away from the street traffic next to one of the club's dumpsters. He let his hair hang in his face and had foregone his evening shave, completing the image. Of course, casual inspection was all he tended to merit when in his 'bum' guise. The dirty clothes tended to put people off looking closer.

He waited for No-Moss to show, wondering if this was a set-up and planning routes out of the trap... just in case.

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Sarah had been mostly quiet on the way to the club. Not that she wasn't considering the situation, and her options. No-Moss's mention of the "fae" wasn't a huge help; all it told her was that this guy they were meeting might conform to any number of fairy tales. She'd never heard of them as real before; but then again, she was a vampire with a warlock lover and hung out with werewolves as much as they'd tolerate her; If the guy's a fairy, that fine, so long as he keeps the silver dust out of my face.

They'd parked a good block away from the actual venue, and hoofed it from there. No-Moss steered the pair away from the front door, to Sarah's relief, and into a side alley. Once there, she immediately caught, amid the garbage and filth, a familiar scent.

A grin spreading across her face, she peered into the night with eyes far better than any mortal ever possessed until she spotted the familiar form, peering back. "Dec!" she called out, quietly but excitedly. "Holy shit, I haven't seen you in ages. Moss call you on this thing, too?"

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Well, time to go out. Jeremy downed a shot glass of beer then walked to the door. Opening it, and walking out into the darkness, his ears caught a quiet voice from the entrance. The reference to Moss made him turn, and in fact, Moss was standing there with a woman Jeremy presumed to be part of the group Moss was assembling for him. He was also able to make out a man standing near them, who apparently was in as well.

Grinning, hands in pockets, he strode towards the threesome, and in a slightly louder voice than the woman's, replied "Well, I recall asking Moss to call anyone he thought could help. So far, so good."

Click to reveal..

To hear Sarah

(12:46:44) (Jeremy): Wits 4 + Composure 3 - 2 for the quiet voice.

(12:46:57) ChatBot: (Jeremy) rolls 5d10 and gets 3,5,7,9,7.

1 sux.

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He pushed himself away from the dumpster and moved towards Sarah, giving her a brief hug of greeting. "How ya doin', frail?" Turning to Moss, he nodded and gave the English uratha a tight grin. "This didn't sound like the sort of party I'd want ta miss."

Finally he turned to Jeremy. Standing between Sarah and No-Moss, the Rahu's silver eyes examined the new face. "You the guy Moss is workin' with?"

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Moss turned at the sound of the door, and recognising Jeremy he holds out a hand to help prevent any pre-emptive action by the other two.

"Lady and Gentleman, may I present Jeremy. As he has said, he is the one who asked me to bring interested parties together tonight. He is also a member of staff or owner of the Amphora here. I will let you introduce yourselves."

Click to reveal..

Wits + composure = 5 dice

(19:59:34) ChatBot: (Moss) rolls 5d10 and gets 4,6,6,10,3.

(19:59:45) ChatBot: (Moss) rolls 1d10 and gets 6.

1 sux

Let them introduce themselves with whatever names they want to use for this guy - after all they don't know him from Adam, and they know that some spirits and others hold that true names hold power over the named...

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Sarah looked the contact over, head to toe and back, as though she was sizing up a meal. Truth be told, the vampire was halfway considering it on a subconscious level. Thankfully, her mind had other ideas.

"Sarah. And so we can get past all the bullshit and verbal dodging right here and now, you don't look like a fairy."

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For a moment to the others, Jeremy looked like he'd been hit with a sledgehammer. It took a moment for him to stay calm, offended by the suggestion. His face firmed for a second before he felt able to respond.

"I'm a changeling, not one of the Fae. You mistake the bastards for the victims. Besides," he murmured as he noted the distinct shade of her skin, "as a vampire you would know we all have ways of hiding from the mortal masses. You just can't see past it."

Taking a breath, he added, "I know you don't know understand yet, but mistaking a changeling for one of the Fae is guaranteed to be offensive."

Click to reveal..

Resolve+Composure to avoid blowing a gasket.

(16:15:35) ChatBot: (Jeremy) rolls 5d10 and gets 1,9,4,2,10.

(16:15:45) ChatBot: (Jeremy) rolls 1d10 and gets 2.

(16:15:50) (Jeremy): 2 sux

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"That's my fault for the misunderstanding." quickly interrupts Moss, "I'm not clear on it all, so I just told Sarah that what you were had something to do with the Fae. I apologise to the both of you for any offence caused, I'm sure it was not intended by any of us."

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"Someone said something about a rumble?" The familiar voice became a familiar shadow, which became Amber as she stepped into the light. Her grey eyes passed over everyone there; only Moss and Declan got grins, and Dec got a big grin. On anyone else, it would have been the equivalent of rushing him for a big hug and offers of beer. Instead, she leaned against the wall and enjoyed the lack of tension in her body as she stood in her ex-cousin's presence. It had been slow to happen, but her brain finally realized she wasn't going to give it another fix.

Click to reveal..
Check to not eat Sarah's face: That's 5, about fuckin' time

10,5,2,9,3,4,5,10,8

Poppin' tens:

1,9

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Jeremy nodded calmly as Moss apologized. He smiled again as he noticed Amber. "Right, I think things are going very well. Sarah has introduced herself, and I know Moss, so the rest of you can do so and I'll bring you all up to speed on the situation."

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Sarah's eyes narrowed at Jeremy's mention of her true nature. Out here, in the shitty light, he shouldn't have noticed... unless he has his own special sensory stuff, you idiot leech.

Amber's voice broke what amounted to a brief reverie. For once, the Dead-Wolf didn't flinch at it. Too much had happened, too much water under the bridge. She'd figured out that her Uratha cousin wasn't going to attack her without good cause, and that mere existence was apparently no longer good cause. It wasn't perfect, but then - given the circumstances - what was?

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Dec returned Amber's grin, finishing up the wordless greeting with a wink that was more mischief than genuine flirtation. "Lookin' good, girl." He turned back to Jeremy.

"Name's Dec. If you know what Moss is, you know what I am." His voice was low and deep-chested, and his stance was more unconsciously dominant and aggressive than the other male werewolf, head lowered slightly and cocked to one side as he studied the Amphora's owner. "This here's Amber, and the same applies to her. So let's go have a drink and talk about what we're here to discuss."

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"Crystal clear." Jeremy replied. "Now," he announced as he moved to the door of the Amphora, "being the boss here means I have the keys. And," as he unlocked the door, "I had the place closed rather early for this meeting. So I can exercise the privilege of giving you folks the House Special right off the shelves, and pretending there's no tab."

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Amber nodded when Declan introduced her, idly thinking to herself that she should probably get a deed name so that strangers stopped learning her real name. Though if push came to shove, she could get Theo's help changing her legal name to something else.

"If the 'House Special' is alcohol, I'll pass. Don't touch the shit," Amber said, her voice gruff for a woman's. Her hard exterior matched the voice; her clothes gave off a definite tough girl vibe - baggy sports shorts, a ratty sports bra and a faded Lakers basketball jersey. Like Declan's outfit, it would survive a shift up into Dalu. She really needed a dedicated set of clothing that she could get dirty in.

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"Each to their own request." Jeremy led them inside and through some dark hallways until they reached the bar. He turned the lights up to a dim glimmer, but not as would attract attention. "Seat yourselves." Jeremy told the group, and waiting till they settled into their leather chair before gathering glasses and the requisite drinks together.

He gravely nodded once they were all provided with beverages. "To fill you guys in, I'll need to start from the beginning. A little while back, I found Adrian feeding at the outside alleyway." He winced. "Wasn't the most pleasant discussion, but things calmed down eventually. Moss was in here, so I happened to meet him the same night."

"Then, a couple months ago, one of our changeling community, Dash Norton, was murdered in his apartment by a sniper. Based on a note, and other details, we figured Hunters were responsible. I called on Adrian, Moss, and one of Adrian's mortal contacts, Samantha, to help investigate. We ended up finding the two men responsible and beat some answers out of them."

"It turns out that they were brought here and set up by this person known as 'Rooster13', from his internet tagline. Fortunately the freehold- that's the term for a changeling community- had some hackers amongst our numbers. After getting the guy's IP address and determining his location, we placed some surveillance on him."

"His name is Abel Wilkins, but he's not the main issue. He belongs to the Lord's Will Evangelical Church at Angelo Drive out to the north of us. Some of the congregation are part of this Apocalypse-obsessed Hunter network called the Long Night. That's one. Second, they don't seem to have any kind of access to sniper rifles or other seriously restricted weapons."

"Which leads us to number three. Some Beasts in animal form discovered that they're meeting with, I quote, 'guys with crosses 'round their necks who look like SWAT members.' And but a hour ago, I learned from one of them that the Long Night have apparently gotten military-level guns from these visitors, and based on the length of these meetings, I'd bet intel on us supernaturals too. That's the sum of it. I understand another meeting of theirs is going through the late night right now."

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Moss absorbs the information, frowning as he does so, "So the guys in this meeting, are they just the local Long Night people or does it include some of these SWAT types as well? And what sort of numbers are we talking about that your contacts have seen in the two groups to date?"

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"Both, I said." Jeremy replied, running his hand across the bar counter nervously. "As for numbers, never more than five for the SWATs, including a couple who stay outside and make sure the coast is clear. The Long Night have maybe 3-4 of their reps."

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"Worst case, then, is maybe a dozen hostiles." Dec was hunched comfortably over his glass of milk. "Assume they're packin' silver, fire, and maybe some other nasty tricks." The male werewolf's silver eyes narrowed as he considered Jeremy and his information. "SWAT types says high-power rifles and/or assault weaponry to me. Maybe auto-shotguns. Silver ammo's easier to make for shotguns than high-power rifles: silver's too soft to be easily used as a bullet. So up to six Jesus-SWAT and let's say equal numbers of these enthusiastic wannabes." He made a sucking-in noise through his teeth.

"That's a lot of flyin' silver." He met Jeremy's eyes. "We're five against maybe twelve. Amber, Sarah, Moss... I'm confident in their ability to throw down. What can you bring to the fight, and how confident are you that these spies of yours ain't been spotted and we're not walking into a trap?"

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Jeremy stared firmly back. "I'm aware this is not going to be easy, Dec. But I have no reason to assume the worst yet. First, they've been sticking rather firm to smaller groups, say 7-8. Second, they're alert, but not expecting a fight, I've been told. Finally, 2-3 of them are always outside, as I said, if we sneak right, we can pick them off without alerting the rest. Sneaking, I'm good at. So 5 vs. 6-7 sounds much better for us. As for the main bash, I'm not particular skilled at fighting, but I plan on staying back, and healing your wounds with some fae magic. Except Sarah, since it doesn't work on the dead."

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Sarah frowned. "Silver isn't exactly my friend either, truth be told." A few glances and raised eyebrows pointed in her direction, demanding some sort of explanation.

"Tried to tell you for a while that I'm tied to Luna and the People. Well, that's part of it. Silver does a real job on me. So if anyone's got a flak jacket or somethin', I won't turn it down. Or a rifle, for that matter. Nice to have something to hurt 'em with until I can get all close and bring claws to bear."

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