<Alison Spektor> wanders into the Trill and takes a long, slow look around before weaving in and out of the tables, tilting down sometimes as if listening to the furniture. People are staring now and then, as the goth girl doesn’t quite fit in even when not acting so oddly.

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ meanders into the Devil’s Trill and peers around at the others a moment. There were the usual people, the usual scents, which as smokey and ale-like as it smelled, it still smelled better than taverns in the old days. The shifter went up to the bar and ordered a pint of some tap beer that Erik thought was decent but was different than his

normal preference. He’d then glance over at Alison for a moment, as others seemed to be moving their eyes that way to see what was up with the unusual girl. In a place with already weird people in it, it was odd someone stood out that bit more but she seemed to do a good job of it.

<Alison Spektor> runs her hands along the backs of each and every chair, taping out a rhythm as she does, each one a little different. She pauses as she passes by Ethan, raising a hand without touching him and fingering lightly as if on a piano as she hums out something much older and familiar, from his own time before trailing off and starting to wander toward the back of the

bar.

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ watched her and his eyes widened as she approached him and played out a rhythm that was different from the others. He recognized it and for a moment thought back to his youth, where he had heard it played with the music to it, on an old phonograph his father had. He’d return back to the present mentally and then head to the bar after her.

“Hello? I do not think we’ve met before.”

<Alison Spektor> stops and turns to look at Ethan again, and tilts her head as she studies him, then nods. “No. Me either. I’m Alice. Who’re you?”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ “I’m Ethan, ma’am. Pleasure to meet you.” *He’d hold out his hand to shake, so proper.

<Alison Spektor> blinks but then shakes his hand gently. “Nice to meet you too. Your song is… out of place. Out of time.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ “Do you hear songs for everyone? I suppose I am kinda out of time in some ways. I’ve been around a while.”

<Alison Spektor> shakes her head a little, her dark curls bouncing off her shoulders. “Yes, everyone has their own music. But yours is different not because of its length, but because it was… paused. Somewhere dark it was lost for a time. But now it resurfaces.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ cants his head slightly to the side studying her a moment and then nods. “You have an interesting gift as a seer of sorts. Just be careful where you look.” He meant that as a helpful thing because he’d really seen awful things and didn’t want her stuck in such a bad trip.

<Alison Spektor> nods. “I cannot help that. It comes to me of its own accord. But I do try not to pry.”, she finally takes a seat, and then offers him a chair as well. “So what are you doing, Ethan?”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ would sit in the chair indicated. “Now? Drinking and enjoying some freedom. Regularly.. working on trying to fight that particular darkness that has kept me away and looking for a job that is more than just farm work. You?”

<Alison Spektor> nods softly. “You fight very hard. It is good that you don’t let that consume you in the process. But you do not fight alone. The darkness is vast… it… congeals into temporary shapes here. I do not like the sound it makes.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ took a drink of the beer. “You want something to drink?”, he’d offer. “It’s..corruption. This place is interesting in that there is a lot of it but also other things too and people do seem willing to fight it here. This place also draws young and old things here.”

<Alison Spektor> nods in agreement and taps out with one hand on the tabletop as if playing a song on a piano. “No drink, thank you. Yes, it draws many. Many different songs overlapping.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ “Are you older than you appear? You dress a lot differently from the others here.”

<Alison Spektor> smiles, the song she plays not pausing as she looks back to Ethan. “Not really. I am younger than most of the others. I just like old clothes.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ nods. “Do they inspire you and I am guessing you learn a lot through hearing the music in people and things?”

<Alison Spektor> nods faintly, the rhythm changing slightly. “Many things inspire me. Everything has a message. People and the things they have touched.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ “That is interesting. Vaclava really gets into music too and she sees things within it. Have you met her?”

<Alison Spektor> nods, listening to something and then giving another brief look around. “I had thought I would find her here. My door is being watched. I had to go.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ “Your door is being watched.. are you in some danger? I could scare off whoever.” He said this rather too assuredly. It was so true.

<Alison Spektor> looks thoughtful, then shakes her head. “Yes and no. I am always in danger. Everyone is. She is angry. I hear a message she does not. She lost the others, but the darkness took them. She would hurt you. She would turn your anger against you. It is not wise to try to frighten her.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ “Well, if you are in trouble, there are people, including me, who can help you. I’m not afraid and people have tried messing with me for some time. I’ve fought back a lot.”

<Alison Spektor> pauses her invisible playing to look seriously at him for a moment, then her features soften again. “Thank you. But in this case, I would not do that to you. I need to gather my thoughts. There are strange melodies moving through town.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ nods. “Alright.” He wasn’t going to press the issue. She seemed smart and could find help if she wanted it, he figured. He finished off his beer and stood up. “I have to be going, but it was nice to meet you.”

<Alison Spektor> watches him getting up and then nods to him. “Alright. Take care. I will see you again.”

¤ ֎ Ethan Talbot ֎ ¤ mused a moment. She was so sure. She was some sort of seer, so he wasn’t going to doubt her. “I’m glad we will. Have a good night, ma’am.” He’d nod politely to her and then head on out of the Trill.

<Alison Spektor> gets back up and starts walking around again, listening here and there. But the others leave her alone aside from the unusual looks.

<<Vaclava>> eventually saunters on into the trill, looking around for any familiar faces.

<Alison Spektor> pauses as Vaclava comes in and tilts her head, watching her for a moment before approaching. “There you are.”

<<Vaclava>> beams as she sees alice “Oh my darling, how amusing to meet you here afvter all!”

<<Vaclava>> goes to embrace her

<Alison Spektor> lets Vaclava hug her and even lightly pats her sides a bit. “It is nice to hear your voice. Are you well then?”

<<Vaclava>> nods “Yes, ofv course as vwell as efver, and how are you?” whispers before pulling away. “I vwonder ifv the cat vfollowed me in here?”

<Alison Spektor> glances behind her and then looks more seriously at Vaclava and shakes her head softly. “She was watching you, you should be careful.”

<<Vaclava>> “Is she not your companion?” frowns in sudden worry.

<Alison Spektor> squeezes Vaclava’s hand lightly. “It is alright. She is the eldest of my line in the city.”

<<Vaclava>> eyebrows shoot up in surprise “Truly? The powers ofv the vitae nefver cease to amaze….” squeezes back.

<Alison Spektor> nods. “She does not leave her home. Doesn’t feel safe outside. Can’t say I blame her. So she uses the cats.”, she taps her other hand lightly before starting to move over to a table to sit once more. “I know I sound strange. So busy… just… trying to wort it out. So much overlapping, too many melodies at once.”

<<Vaclava>> follows her and sits across from her at a table. she listens as alice speaks and reaches across the table to touch her hand gently “perhaps not as strange as you think.”

<<Vaclava>> “The melodies don’t alvways vfit together in a sensible pattern, do they? Vwe hafve to learn vwhich ones to vfocus on, to control the vfolume, so to speak. SOmetimes, vwe choose poorly.”

<Alison Spektor> nods, then brushes her hair from her face as her fingers play out a pattern on the table-top and she looks around nervously. “It’s not just that. Some are old, some overtake others. The same way one person’s song becomes a part of your own when you feed on them.”

<<Vaclava>> “Some are old? Recurring themes, you mean?”

<Alison Spektor> sighs and her fingertip spins little circles as she speaks. “One is very powerful. It spins around and around, the tempo is so fast. One is a lullaby of beeps and clicks and noises. One is strong and fierce but just plays the same thing over and over again. One… one is hiding. I catch a note here or there, what i have pieced together is very dark, very bad.”

<Alison Spektor> rubs her hands together momentarily, one over the other, drawn to her chest as she goes over it in her head with a worried expression.

<<Vaclava>> “Hafve you recorded them, put them to paper for any other to hear?”

<Alison Spektor> shakes her head. “No. Especially not the last one. But I have played parts of the others before.”

<<Vaclava>> nods thoughtfully, searching her memory to match up anything that alice is talking about with something she may have heard in the past herself.

<Alison Spektor> listens for a moment and looks around the room nervously again as she wrings her hands.

<<Vaclava>> “Is something troubling you here?”

<Alison Spektor> “There is something wrong. I shall have to go soon.”

<<Vaclava>> “Something you heard?”

<<Vaclava>> listens herself, trying to figure out what set alice off.

<Alison Spektor> shakes her head a bit, curls bouncing. “Be careful. As you listen, they watch. They know.”

<<Vaclava>> hums the opening bars of her composition for selyri

<Alison Spektor> stops completely and listens to Vaclava, then her fingers start playing something quick and sharp against her legs before she stops herself and gets up. “I, I really need to go.”, she looks down. “I will talk to you later. Be safe, Vaclava. Don’t let them drown you out.”

<<Vaclava>> “you as vwell, my dear.”

<Alison Spektor> smiles and briefly hugs her before heading back out the door, twitching nervously as she does so and mumbling to herself.

<<Vaclava>> heads back home as well shortly thereafter, to muse on the music