Christopher walks outside into the night. He stops over at a tree and sits down next to it enjoying the night air and contemplating greater mysteries.
[Rakshasa] is walking around in the lawn as he usually does every evening after sunset
<Fiona> puts away a book before stretching and going to take a walk, nodding to Chris and Rak.
[Rakshasa] sees Chris lost in thought. It oddly reminds him of his younger self. He finds it both interesting and disturbing, considering the path he has been led down
Chris notices the other two and smiles and waves but continues to sit lazily in his comfortable spot beside the Tree.
[Rakshasa] nods back noticing the young vampire “Good evening Fiona. How are you doing tonight?”
<Fiona> “Good. Spent some time in the library.”
[Rakshasa] “Thats time well spent. Speaking of which, how did the cave mission go?”
<Fiona> “Found some odd shit that looked vaguely Native American. Also, something or someone possessed the kid.”
Christopher gets up and walks over to the other two.”A possession? I was afraid such a phenomena could be a threat. Can you recall what lead up to it?”
[Rakshasa] His oblong pupils expanded at the mention of ‘odd shit’ but immediately contracted at the mention of possession “Kitt has been possessed? What happened?”
<Fiona> blinked once, blinding herself and swearing. “She got out of the car.”
Christopher blinks as well,”She stepped out of the car and got possessed? Was their anything strange about the possession? Perhaps we can discern the nature of the spirit.”
<Fiona> “Gimme a bit, and I can do it.”
[Rakshasa] “Thats it? She got out of the car and got possessed? A vampire, possessed by some lowly ghost?!”
“You sound offended, Tiger.” Anne’s gravelly voice pipes up from nearby. “Sorry if I’m inturrupting,” she says with a grin and a shrug, “I’ve been told I gravitate towards distress.”
<Fiona> just looks at Rakshasa, before she turns her head and glares at Anne.
“Firebrand.” Anne nods back, returning Fiona’s glare with a slight grin.
Chris raises his eyebrows,”What is the significance of ‘Firebrand’?”
“Just a habit I have.” Anne responds to Chris’ question with a slight shrug. “I give people nicknames. Makes it easier to remember them.”
<Fiona> mutters a few swears, still glaring at Anne, before shrugging and walking off a bit.
[Rakshasa] gives a nod to Anne “Good to see you. I wasn’t offended, rather surprised that the ultimate predator can be possessed by some wisp from the spirit world. Perhaps you can explain in detail what happened in the cave?”
“I was covering the back, so I didn’t see much.” Anne gestures vaguely towards her right eye. “Missing a bit of peripheral vision, yeah? We got a bit of the way through, then Pup started walking around like she was shell-shocked and speaking in tongues. So either she found Allah in those caves, or there was a bit of possession.”
Chris opens his eyes wide and pull out a small notebook to write this down.”Speaking in tongues, now that’s a small lead. Unfortunate as a posession is, it can give us clues. Did anybody get hurt and has the spirit left her corpus?”
“No injuries except fore somebody’s pride.” Anne says with the barest of smirks. “I don’t know where the spirit is. I dropped Pup off with Sascha.”
Christopher,”If we still had it in our posession it could yet lead to more answers. So there were Sandmen found at this other cave as well and it appears to have Native American influences?”
[Rakshasa] “So her body is a soulless husk now?”
“If it is,” Anne growls lightly, “I’m going to be having words with Sascha. Many words, with lots of pointy epithets.”
Christopher frowns,”She hasn’t returned to normal? We should assess her condition at once. If a vampire is possessed it is a serious thing. Most spirits of both the deadlands and the Umbral cannot overcome the darkness of the Beast. If she did not return to normal this may be a very… grave matter.”
[Rakshasa] “Yes, I doubt a Ventrue or a Giovanni has possessed her.”
Christopher nods as well.”Particularly if it were speaking in tongues. Unless it is some unknown native american vampire, it is probably a powerful spirit of the dead. Native American influences suggest that perhaps you were on some form of burial ground. Since she was studying how to communicate with spirits it is also possible that a spirit of the corrupted earth took possession of her when she stepped onto the soil.”
“If that’s the case, then why didn’t it effect the rest of us?” Anne asks with a furrowed eyebrow. “We stepped on the same dirt, and I don’t think Pup was even the first one in.”
Christopher seems to ponder for a moment,”A solid question that requires more data. For now, was there any more samples gathered from the cave site?”
<Fiona> “I didn’t take anything or any pictures, if that’s what you mean?”
[Rakshasa] “What other odd things did you encounter in that cave?”
Christopher seems visibly frustrated,”What?!… You went on a trip… to gather samples… and… ugh.” He calms down,”Oh well, it appears we are going to resort to plan B. I am going to begin to make preparations for me to leave to New Orleans posthaste. I have done some preliminary research on possible targets and I would like permission to lead the expidition to find this ‘lab rat’ that we need. Anyone skilled with subterfuge and spying may be helpful as we need to see if any of them have relevant skills or information. Maybe we’ll be lucky and find someone who already knows something about this or who has encountered it before. We should also be careful in concealing ourselves due to the proximity to enemy territory. This is why I believe we should limit the expedition to Revenants.”
[Rakshasa] “If by stealth you mean inconspicuous disguise, I can turn into a harmless looking owl” He smirks
“So we’re branching out from kidnapping theatre patrons to kidnapping scientists now?” Anne grunts somewhat bemusedly. “Good to see this outfit’s not a one-trick horse.”
Christopher smiles,”Kidnapping? I was more thinking,’established contact’. The Grimaldi could help us manipulate them into giving the right information. On the other hand An Owl would actually be a wonderful disguise. I would however prefer much if not all surveillance be done during the day… It would severly limit our enemies ability to hinder us or even monitor our activities.”
<Ghost> comes stalking up behind Christopher and tilts his head as he comes out of obfuscate. “Look at this one, forgetting his place like a pro.”
<Fiona> snorts at Ghost. “Don’t fucking do that again. That’s creepy as shit.”
“Why do you think I call him spooks?” Anne mutters to herself at Fiona’s exclamation.
<Ghost> looks over at Fiona and smiles, shaking his head. “I did not mean to startle you. But in order to go into that city, you need at least a Bishop’s permission. And I doubt they are going to be keen on the idea.”
Christopher looks to Ghost,”Does that rule apply to revenants as well? After all when there is daylight the influence of the vampires becomes limited to their mortals and ghouls. A trained revenant could walk around virtually unnoticed and unhindered with proper disguise and credentialing. With a few such ghouls we could cover some ground, then retreat to safety before the sun wanes so that our presence remains unnoticed as anything other than mortals.”
[Rakshasa] “I have a gut feeling, things will go south if we manage to find our little learned friend”
“Might have a bit of trouble finding a scientist who specialized in magic and spirits, too.” Anne shrugs. “Just saying, but empiricism tends to frown on that kind of stuff in academia.”
<Ghost> growls deep in his throat as he looks down on Chris. “Again, you forget your place. Perhaps I should have a word with your keeper on the matter of discipline with you.”
Christopher responds,”That won’t be necessary.” and falls silent.
<Ghost> shakes his head, expression still serious however. “I am not saying that seeking a scientist is not a bad idea. Just that there is plenty of out own territory to look in.”
[Rakshasa] “If its necessary to go to Camarilla territory, I can go. I am known to be an independent vampire and a traveler; None of the Camarilla, especially the pesky neonates will bother me with their ‘traditions’ ”
“I think they might object to you filching their herd, though. Especially the useful ones.” Anne retorts.
[Rakshasa] “I am a ghost. No one knows my real name, no one knows where I go, where I stay. If I even were to abduct the target and flee, they wont even know who did it, forget about tracking me down if they realize it was me”
<Ghost> shrugs his shoulders. “I suggest you ask one of the Bishops first. But I do not see why everyone inists that the only way to go is into the city where we know for a fact that there are Archons staying right now.”
“So we’re back to the kidnapping, then.” Anne rolls her eyes. “Besides, that still doesn’t solve the present issue of actually requiring permission to pull this particular stunt off. I don’t know if the boss is going to look kindly of using technicalities to avoid getting their permission for this little raid.”
[Rakshasa] “Wait! Archons?!” His pupils contract “It will be most unwise to go into that city. You do not want to start a war with the inner circle”
<Ghost> holds his hands up as he starts to move back into the shadows again, letting them coil about his features. “Or maybe you think that you can relay information to the enemy, since you aren’t really one of us? Seems to be a valid reason for going there, instead of choosing the fifty or so Sabbat cities in the area.”
“There are easier methods of passing along information if that’s what he was trying to do.” Anne scoffs. “Less obtrusive ones as well.”
[Rakshasa] laughs loudly and in a dismissive tone “That was a good one. Me, a spy for the Camarilla. If I even were to be a spy, I would have reported the location and weaknesses of this place a few nights ago.”
Chris shakes his head,”No intention of giving information to the enemy. I believe someone else came up with the idea of that city in the first place. Trust me there is no love for the Tremere from me… I’d rather see them all burn… Them and all their allies.”
[Rakshasa] “Not to mention I had a great opportunity to take out the revenant and the tzimisce, night before yesterday if I were to be the enemy”
“Kid, trust me. You don’t want to see them all burn. Killing all your enemies sounds like fun, but it starts to turn tedious after a while.” Anne claps a hand on Chris’ shoulder. “Besides, strength in numbers counts for something, so you’ll probably live longer not seeking eternal vengeance anyway.”
<Ghost> simply folds his arms over his chest, and listens. “Then why not another nearby city that we control?”
“Barring the issue of requiring permission,” Anne turns to Ghost, “where are we going to find a scientist equipped to deal with spirits and the like? Not to mention how they might effect demons such as we.”
[Rakshasa] puts his hands in his pockets “Because, If the scientist is truly that much skilled. I doubt we will find an equal substitute” He pauses for moment “But forget all that. If archons are in that city, that is enough reason not to go there”
<Fiona> heads off
Christopher nods,”All of this is very true. Perhaps the best route would be to find a way to lure our quarry from the city into our territory. Perhaps we can intermediantly effect some supervisor and create some ruse such as a science convention, require their attendance. Then when they arrive we can pick them up and bring them here.”
Chris adds,”Also they may possess better resources than us for this task, so we may want to instead somehow tab them or other method to get the information we seek once they return to their own laboratory.”
“If this scientist is really so wonderful,” Anne’s brow furrows, “then wouldn’t the camarilla have snatched them up? Or at least be keeping some pretty close tabs on them?”
[Rakshasa] “That sounds like an interesting idea, the convention one. How will you execute it?”
<Ghost> looks back and forth and takes a long, deliberate breath. “You’re stupid, and overthinking it. Simply put out a job application for a research project requiring an expereinced geologist or whatever. And we have a great many universities in our territory.”
[Rakshasa] “A lure like that wont work. A prominent scientist like that likely has a cushy job with tenure and a fat salary. Why should he bother changing jobs?”
Christopher furrows in thought,”The mundane data surrounding the soil isn’t particularly interesting out of context. Perhaps we could post it on the internet and allow the experts to analyze it’s contents while maintaining anyonymity? We could have one of the Universities post it. If any scientists respond in our area or recognize it we can… collect them.”
[Rakshasa] “Only if the prospect is lucrative enough will a big fish bite the bait”
<Ghost> tilts his head a bit, thinking on it. “I don’t see the need for having a human do it anyway. I am sure we have Revenants about that have specialties in this, if not here, then certainly up north. I know in Montreal they have many scientists that have been studying soil from the mountain there trying to understand it’s properties.”
[Rakshasa] looks at Ghost “As you wish” he says it with an emotionless and neutral tone as if he is neither excited nor annoyed
Christopher nods,”Well I have done what I can for its analysis. Until we have something else I should like to return to my research and training. I have been working on some things that should benefit us greatly on our missions.”
“Oh?” Anne perks up. “Care to share with the class?”
Christopher smiles,”Well to begin I am presently working on creating ways to preserve the potency of blood long term so that it can be stored for replenishment in the field. After that I have more ambitous goals of weaponizing liquid nitrogen for use against the sandmen. I believe that if they were frozen that they would become brittle and easy to destroy. Not to mention temporarily immobile…”
“Best way to win a fair fight is to cheat.” Anne nods. “Big fan of tilting the odds, myself. Sounds like some useful shite.”
[Rakshasa] gives a barely perceptible smile. The young revenant does remind him of his younger self. Full of ambitions and a dash of recklessness
Christopher nods,”Thank you, I hope to find ways to provide better support for all of us. Eventually I should be able to defend myself as well as give aid. For now, I have much to do to get there. Let me know if there is anyway I can help.” Christopher then walks inside to get back to his studies. He will become better at his work.
<Ghost> shakes his head softly and backs up into the shadows, allowing them to consume him silently.
[Rakshasa] nods to Anne and starts walking towards the abandoned building. Its time he practiced some of his martial arts
Anne nods back as Rakshasa leaves, then leans herself back against the nearest wall, closes her eye, and heaves a deep sigh.