<Henry> looks about the room and nods slowly, “I suppose the hospital was out.” It was more of a mumbled statement than anything else as he looks back down at himself, turning his hands over and marveling that he felt… better… more than better, really. “I’m not sure what really happened. How long was I out for?” Perhaps he had hit is head, a thought that was evident when he began prodding his head tentatively, “I have the oddest

recollection of that happened.” He lets his had drop and chuckles softly, sure that Cassian would likely find his memory of the events to be ludicris.

■► Cassian ◄■ peers over at Henry and then back at the book on his desk that he seemed to be writing in…with a quill pen. It looked pretty old and thick. “What is your recollection?”

<Henry> gives the quill a curious look. Well, he supposed the white haired doctor was possibly a bit eccentric, but that was not so odd given Henry’s occupation. There were also worse places that Henry could have woken up, “Well, I heard some crying at work and I tracked it down to the book I had with me.” He wasn’t sure what had happened to the old book, “When I opened it, there was this drawing of a child in a cage with lions. I may

have panicked a little and I attempted to divide the lions from the girl as I phoned you. In hindsight, that may sound a bit odd, but I assure you it was perfectly reasonable at the time.” Henry rubbed at the bridge of his nose and sighed, “After I hung up a… ethereal woman told me I needed to go to the girl. So I… ran until I could catch a cab. Once I was at the zoo, I saw… or rather I thought I saw rather unpleasant looking

shadows following you. At least I was fairly sure it was you…. until you leaped over an impressively high fence. since I couldn’t get into the zoo, I threw a rock and got their attention. Which, in hindsight, was also a poorly thought out plan. As it turns out, I am not the fastest sprinter and I tire rather quickly. Unsurprisingly they caught me and I thought… ” Henry turns a little red, “Well, they did… something unpleasant and

then there was a light and I hit the ground in the most unpleasant way. The rest is a bit fuzzy, but you were there… and… I swear I drank your blood and you said you were a vampire.” Which, was rather ridiculous, but he was fine now. He suspected that he might have just hit his head and passed out, “I also had some rather vivid dreams while I was out. Did you… give me anything hallucinogenic?”

■► Cassian ◄■ nods. “Your recollection is fine, Henry. That is indeed what happened and yes, I am a vampire and you were given my blood or else you would have died.”

<Henry> puts a hand over his mouth as he made a silent “Oh” expression and then looked around the room before looking back at Cassian a little skeptically, “Are you quite sure? I always imagine vampires would be more… terrifying and less… helpful.” He squints and leans forward a bit, “Well, I admit I feel fairly well, aside from shaken. Uh… are there any other carnivorous shadows about?”

■► Cassian ◄■ smirks slightly and then smiles, then his eyes gleam red and his fangs come out, his skin seems so pale, his white/silver hair seems to move by a wind that doesn’t exist…This lasts for maybe two or three seconds, and the furious appearance fades away behind his calm exterior. “I am a vampire, or Kindred, as we like to call ourselves.”

■► Cassian ◄■ takes out his phone, momentarily checking it over after it buzzed. He’d then text something.

<Henry> had been leaning forward on the bed. When Cassian’s appearance changed Henry made a rather indignant sounding yelp and jumped so violently that he plum fell out of the bed, rolling to his back and then scrambled to his feet. The slightly panicked man grabbed the first thing he could reach, an ornamental object of some form and turned to brandish it like a shield at Cassian. Well, at least until the effect faded and Henry was left

blinking dumbfounded for a moment. He gave an exclamation in some foreign language and slowly set the object down as he kept his eyes focused on Cassian, as unblinking as he could manage as a mortal. Now, some mortals might have ran away screaming, Henry didn’t. Perhaps he didn’t have a good sruvival instinct. He did throw a rock at carnivorous shadows, afterall. Slowly, very slowly, and with an incredibly curious look, Henry inched

closer to the desk until it was all that separated them and then he leaned in very slowly and reached out a trembling hand to tap cassian’s arm as if checking that he was real, “Huh… and you can do that any time you like? That -is- fascinating…. are you going to eat me?” It was a rather clinical sounding question, but Henry needed to know.

■► Cassian ◄■ “No, I am not going to eat you, Henry. I may wish for a sip of blood now and then, but I will not kill you.” His voice seemed quite honest and calm. “I normally get blood from various sources that do not recall it and it is not harmful to them in any way really. You have nothing to fear from me, Henry.”

<Henry> let’s out a rather relieved sigh, “Oh that is a relief, Dr Narlanthi. I think I’ve had enough excitement for a bit and I still need to face the curator over that book I tool.” Henry winces, “On the other hand, death might be better than facing her when she finds out I defaced a museum piece to save a child in a zoo.” She was also not going to believe that, “I ah… also need to go to the swamp, which would be rather difficult if

I were dead. I think… but then again maybe not… but certainly much colder.” Then Henry paused as if his mind had caught up with him, “Wait… my blood? A sip?” He supposed that made sense if Cassian was a vampire, “Ah. I suppose that is alright. Rather like a very specific blood donation….”

■► Cassian ◄■ “I want to see this book. You can come to the Devil’s Trill tomorrow night and bring it with you. Do not mention marking it. As for the other part, going to the swamp, you definitely should not be going out there alone. You aren’t exactly the physical sort, so I hope you will be a bit more informative on why you wish to go out there and perhaps

we can isolate exactly the spot in which you need to venture to.”

<Henry> Wasn’t really the sort to take items out of the museum to show people, but Cassian had saved his life and it wasn’t likely to harm the book. It was also currently in his care in the museum and it wouldn’t be missed if he took it for a night. “The Devil’s Trill… isn’t that a biker bar?” He was being advised to be careful in the swamp, but apparently a Welsh bookworm would be safe in a biker bar, “I… suppose, yes. I can do

that.” Henry sat down in an available chair and took off his glasses for a moment so he could rub his eyes, “I suppose it isn’t stranger than anything else. While I was sleeping, I had a very vivid dream where I was in the dark, after a moment I saw a green light and when I followed it, I found a candle with a green flame. It was sick and corrupt, but there was also a frightened child there. It became horribly cold and she looked dead

after a moment, but she needed to find her Mother Nikki. Then there was something else, dangerous, getting closer.” Henry resettled his glasses and sat back as if he was discussing the weather, “An older man appeared and took the girl to safety. He said he’d hold back the demons while I came back here and showed me the way. Then I woke up. He… told me to bring a boat and listen to the wind. That there were things I needed to know. I

know it mignt simply be a dream, but it felt so real and… I need to check on the girl and if there is more danger, I need to know.” He let out a sigh, “I simply need to know.”

■► Cassian ◄■ nods. “If you go to the Devil’s Trill, the bartender is named Erik. You can tell him I sent you there and he’ll help keep you safe, but really you should be alright. You are my servant. It seems you either talked to some powerful wraith or spirit of nature. I am not sure who this man is, but we are dealing with beings who are corrupt…trying to

stop them. Please do be careful on who you tell any of this to from here on out. There may be more people searching for your items you have acquired and we do not know who the man is yet who said your job was forfeit.”

<Henry> there were a couple of things in that statement that didn’t quite make sense to the Welshman, “Ah, I don’t really know anyone who would believe me.” Not that he’d tell anyone, Cassian had a very good point on the matter of safety. His did hold up a finger though, for stalling any more conversation on the matter of swamp wraiths, “Pardon? Servant?” Not that Henry was bothered by the notion, but… “When exactly… did I become

your servant?” It was an honestly curious question without any hint that he found it

Indignant or out of place… just… startling as a revelation.

■► Cassian ◄■ “The moment I was forced to choose between letting you die and saving your life. You now have my blood and with it, you will learn to do some fantastic things, including having the ability to heal your own wounds and do some physical things like being that bit stronger than you are now. If you want to be free of this, I will need to take away

your memory of what has transpired, but I do not think it is safe enough to do right at this point since we have not yet found the man responsible who wants your items from the museum for some reason. There is a story out there we need to hear. After the danger is passed in this scenario, you will have the choice of me taking away this memory for you so you can go back to the mundane world

out there, or ..you will be my servant and learn more.”

Henry didn’t look entirely thrilled at the prospect of forgetting anything about this. That simply wasn’t an option for him. Even after all the things he’d been through in the last couple of days, he wanted to know more. Perhaps with greater safety, but that didn’t change that he was curious, “Somehow, I doubt that stuffing my head in the sand like a bloody ostrich is going to change what is out there.” He states rather simply, “At least

knowing about it would allow me some defence and I rather enjoy learning. Besides, I do owe you my life.” Henry took that debt quite seriously, however he did give Cassian a rather apologetic grimace, “I’m afraid I am rather wretched at cleaning windows though and I am not the best at floors either… actually… I admit, I hire one of those cleaning agencies for most of it since I tend to work a fair bit… and I suppose I will be

required to leave my current employer?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “You have some skills I would be interested in utilizing. I am sure we can figure out what they are, but one is that you speak a few different languages at least and you are a researcher and anthropologist who knows some occult. These are good trades.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “You will not leave your current employer unless there’s some emergency reason to do so, in which it would be a danger for you to continue being there or there’s something else really required of you.”

<Henry breathed another sigh of relief, “No windows then? Oh thank the heavens.” He really did not want to be someone’s maid, life saving kindred vampire doctor or not! “Twenty one, if you count jolly old English. However… most are rather… dead. Ancient languages are a specialty of mine and many have been lost to antiquity, in terms of usage. Creole dialects are also a favourite which is what lent me to the position with the Historic

Voodoo Museum. That and my fascination with folklore, rituals, and religion.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “That is impressive. I know quite a few myself but you may know more than that or fill in some. I am new to this region so working on Creole among others. I am a studier of occult and mysticism. They are specialities. We may get along quite well.”

<Henry> lifts an eyebrow and grins, “Well then, we may be able to assist each other, but….” Henry gives Cassian a dubious look and eyes the shelves of the study as he leans in and says one word, “Quenya?” For Henry this was the true test if he’d really mesh well with someone.

■► Cassian ◄■ smirks amused. “I do know some Quenya and Sindarin. Tolkien was quite talented.” He’d get up and walk over to a shelf and gesture to a book that the binder back read “The Languages of Tolkien”. “If this is a language you know well, we can use it between us when we do not want others to understand, though fill in the words not available

by modern convenience with some others from other languages such as Sumerian or latin.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “You can go for now and we’ll talk again soon and head out to this swamp.”