<<Vaclava>> takes a break from rehearsing and the gossip of the art gallery to head down to the trill and relax.

■► Cassian ◄■ meanders into the Trill and would go to the bar to order a half glass of JD and coke, and then head over to a booth to chill out in. He took his phone out and began checking over some messages and what not.

<<Vaclava>> gets a big glass of cheap red wine and tips erik extra to fill it less than to the top. she then kisses the rim with a saucy wink, leaving behind lipstick lip marks.

<<Vaclava>> turning around sees cassian head over to a booth and smiles, glides over there in her red satin stage shoes.

<<Vaclava>> “Good efvening, Cassian, vwhat are you up to, darling?” kiss kiss

<Martin> wanders in from outside and looks slowly around before starting to make his way to the back of the room. He pauses as he spies Cassian and Vaclava, and then sits at the table near to theirs.

■► Cassian ◄■ gestures across from him. “Hello, Vaclava. I am looking over messages because I was at work and people cannot leave me alone it seems. How are you doing tonight?” He’d glance over at Martin and give him a nod.

<<Vaclava>> blinks as Martin comes in and sits nearby. “I remember you, you vwere there the night vwith Ethan and the vfake cops.”

<Martin> looks over and then nods his head. “Yes, I was. That was an unplesent encounter.”

<<Vaclava>> smirks slightly “Yes…but moreso vfor those vwho didn’t actually vwalk avway.”

■► Cassian ◄■ listened, somewhat curious now. “So, you are both welcome to sit over here then.”

<Martin> gets up and moves over to sit with Cassian. “I did not see what happened after I lost control.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Ethan is staying now with the Mages and is doing better. The ‘cops’ who were fake..some of them were killed fighting actual cops and the ones who were not were cleared in the head of any memory and sent back to where they came from.”

<<Vaclava>> looks at Martin sympathetically “Yes, and then the rest ofv us ran back avway to the Trill.”

<<Vaclava>> “Yes Ethan vwas the prisoner ofv those cops. He is doing better now, but I hafven’t seen him either in a little vwhile. How hafve you been doing?”

<Martin> shakes his head as he listens and then stares unblinking at Vaclava. “I see. I am well I suppose. Still working. Still… above ground.”

<<Vaclava>> “Ah yes, vwe could alvways be six vfeet under, right? Or ash. So vwhat is it you vwork at?”

<Martin> “I am a private investigator. You?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Yes, what is it you do work on, Martin?”

<<Vaclava>> “Oh really? How Humphvrey Bogart ofv you!” laughs delightedly. “I am a composer and a conductor, I’m currently trying to vfind a talented enoughv choreographver to vwork vwith a vfery, vfery amazing talent I hafve vwritten a ballet vfor. It’s impossibly vfrustrating.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “A ballet for.. That is pretty amazing.”

<<Vaclava>> smiles “Oh you’re too kind. You hafven’t efven heard it.”

<Martin> smiles a little bit, which almost looks strange on his stringy features. “Ahhh, I see. That does sound very frustrating.”

<<Vaclava>> sighs “Yes, vwell, the people vwho choreograph ballets…they aren’t alwvays so vwilling to incorporate modern elements. They don’t vwant to mofve into modern nights, they vwant to recapture glory ofv days past. That’s not vwhat my ballet is about at all.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Well, what is your ballet about then? What is the theme?”

<Martin> listens attentively, his scraggily hair hanging down about his face.

<<Vaclava>> brings fist into palm with an abrupts snap “Change. Lofve and hope that surfvives it, time alters their target yet they remain vwhat they are.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “That sounds so romantic and intriguing. Dramatic, dare I say.”

<Martin> nods in agreement, glancing between them.

<<Vaclava>> chuckles “Ah do I detect a note ofve cynicism in your tone, Cassian?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “I am a cynic by nature, but no, it actually does somewhat intrigue me. I have not seen a good ballet in decades.”

<<Vaclava>> “Oh how nice, I assure you you vwill not be disappointed. This dancer…she’s…incredible. She really expresses the nuance in an emotion, and you can see the change as vwell as hear it in the music.”

<<Vaclava>> “Also, there’s plenty ofv death and destruction.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Well, I will definitely want a solid seat in that. Remember. Reserve it. I will of course pay but I know how the rich people always hog up the best seats first before others can get to them.”

<<Vaclava>> “You can’t experience the height ofv an emotion vwithout really vfeeling its complete lack, or absence.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “So, Martin.. what kind of private eye are you? What does your main case load consist of?”

<Martin> “A little of everyting. Mostly working on some personal things right now. A missing persons… and a homocide.”

<<Vaclava>> “Ah, Cassian, ofv course I vwill reserfve you a balcony. It vwill make me vfery happy to give you that seat rather than just anyone.”

■► Cassian ◄■ smirks to Vaclava. “Thank you.” He’d look back at Martin. “If you need any assistance..I am a doctor and also do forensics work.”

<Martin> looks at Cassian. “I have some autopsy reports I could bring you.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Alright.” He takes out a card and hands it to Martin. “That’s the clinic I work out of so you could bring them there if we do not just meet here. I do answer that phone number too.”

<Sissy> comes into the Trill and looks around for a few seconds before moving off toward the bar and taking a seat there. She orders a cherry coke with extra cherry and then quietly scans the room again.

<Martin> takes the card and nods to Cassian. “Thank you. Some of the paperwork might be a decade or so old, is that alright?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Yes, that is fine. As long as I can read it, there should be no issues and if I have a way to contact you, should I have questions, that would be good.”

<Martin> blinks and then nods. “I’m sorry. Didn’t even think.”, he reaches into his pocket and pulls out an old card. “Here. I keep the number active, just in case.”

<<Vaclava>> “Now I am curious. Is it about someone you knew personally, Martin?”

■► Cassian ◄■ accepts the card and would place it in his wallet. “Thanks.”

<Sissy> takes one of the cherries from her drink and nibbles on it while she watches the interesting people sitting together.

<Martin> looks over at Vaclava. “One of them in myself.”

<<Vaclava>> notices sissy and smirks to herself, looks back at Martin with raised eyebrows “Oh my. You’re invfestigating your own murder, my dear?”

<<Vaclava>> looks concerned “I hear that doesn’t usually turn out so vwell.”

<Deveraux> pulls the heavy metal door open and steps inside. Once inside he immediately removes his tophat and does a quick scan of the room to see who is present that he knows and doesn’t know. He starts moving toward Sissy at a casual pace, his walking stick hitting the ground at exactly the same time as his right boot heel.

■► Cassian ◄■ glances over at Sissy, studying her a moment after Vaclava drew attention to the woman.

<Martin> nods to Vaclava. “Yes. I know it was three men. I know nothing more than that. I suspect they are mafia related. I was left in a shallow grave while seeking a young girl taken by these men. I also seek to discover her fate.”

■► Cassian ◄■ ‘s gaze then went to Deveraux, who was definitely not dressed like anything else in here. Auspex gave away what he was assuming but it was always good to make sure, if he could trust in auspex.

<<Vaclava>> leans over and whispers to cassian “There he is. That man showed up last night, his name is Devereaux but I really don’t know much more about him aside vfrom he is here because things hafve become …interesting.”

<Sissy> smiles as she sees Deveraux coming over and she nods to the seat beside her, signing “Hello again.”, before taking a drink of her soda.

<<Vaclava>> to Martin “Oh dear, I really vwonder ifve the girl is alright. You say this vwas ofver a decade ago?”

<<Vaclava>> to cassian “Also he has a vfery charming old vworld style.”

■► Cassian ◄■ nods, listening to Martin’s tale of woe and then Vaclava’s words about the new visitor. “I see, Martin. This seems to be something of a tragic thing. This happened 10 years ago?”

<Deveraux> sets his tophat on the bar and leans his walking stick against it before signing in return to Sissy, “Good evening. It is good to see you again so soon. I trust your day went well?”

Wow, haven’t seen that nick in a long time.

<Martin> “Yes. It took me seven just to get back to my body.”

■► Cassian ◄■ was watching Sissy and Deveraux casually while looking at the others. He knew sign language but he wasn’t going to really say anything to the effect for now. After all, her attention was on someone else and he was not aware she was deaf prior.

<Sissy> nods, watching him a moment and her eyes flick to Cassian. She had met him before and he translated for her to Henry so she knew he knew it, and signed such to Deveraux. “Our conversation is not quite as private as last night, so you are aware. My day went well, I got what i needed done. Did you sleep well?”

<Deveraux> nods at the privacy alert and signs back, “I did, thank you. I do think I need to find a meal tonight, though. Not here, of course. I think somewhere on Bourbon Street I shall find a suitably unscroupulous individual or three. From the faces I have noticed in my walk from the door to you the gentleman with white hair seems the best guess for the other party that can

understand our gestures. Am I correct?”

<<Vaclava>> looks horrified “Seven years? I mean…vwhat could you hafve been doing in the meantime?”

<Martin> looks to Vaclava. “Being a Wraith is not easy. Getting back to my body was even harder, it takes some practice to get it to move. Why i probably sound funny. The Tremere helped some though. They were much better to deal with than the Giovanni.”

■► Cassian ◄■ would have turned away respectfully but hey, they were talking about him so eh, he did not feel he needed to really divert his attention, so he was still listening to the others and he gave a nod to Sissy and then to Deveraux.

<<Vaclava>> “A vwraith, truly?” grimaces as he mentioned Giovanni. “I can only imagine vwhat they vwould hafve required…” leans forward towards him conspiriatorially and says quietly “they say they only embrace vwithin the vfamily, so to speak…”

<Sissy> nods to Deveraux and takes a drink of her soda. As Cassian nods to her she nods back politely and then sets her drink back down again, nibbling on another cherry from it as she signs, “Yes. We met only breifly but i remember the hair.”

<Martin> blinks, and then laughs a little raspily. “Ew. But i get it. Yes, technically you could view everyone as just a ghost driving a meat-suit.”

<Deveraux> signs, “I see. Etiquette dictates that I go introduce myself. Please excuse me for a short time.” He reaches for his walking stick and tophat and turns to head over to where Cassian and the others are.

<<Vaclava>> “So vwhat did you do to anger a Giovanni, I vwonder?”

<<Vaclava>> looks up as devereaux comes over and smiles, rises from her seat. “Ah, Monsieur Devereaux, how nice to see you again. These are my vfriends, Cassian, and Martin.”

<Sissy> nods to him, “Of course.”, she says quietly and then slides the drink toward Erik. “Toss some rum in that, would you?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “The Giovanni do have a way with wraiths, though it is not generally a good way.” He’d rise to his feet as Deveraux approached, because it was the proper thing to do. He’d incline his head politely to Deveraux as Vaclava introduced him.

<<Vaclava>> is totally watching to see if sissy actually drinks it out of the corner of her eye

<Sissy> does totally drink it when Erik puts some rum in it and slides it back to her.

<Deveraux> “Forgive the intrusion, please, but I wanted to introduce myself. My name is Deveraux.” He bows at them in greeting. “It is nice to make your acquaintance.”

<Martin> looks over and nods to Deveraux. “Nice to see you again.”

<<Vaclava>> “Ah, you know each other, how nice!”

<Deveraux> nods to them as he addresses each, “Martin. Miss Kapralova.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “I am Cassian, as Vaclava said. A pleasure.”

<<Vaclava>> “Please, join us, and no need to exclude your vfriend…” nods with a smile at sissy and then looks back at devereaux. “Vwe’re all vfriends here.”

<Sissy> studies them quietly off and on from her seat at the bar, sipping her drink.

■► Cassian ◄■ signs to Sissy “I hope you are well. I did not mean to intrude in your discussion. If you would like to come over, please do join us. I do not mind translating for you again.”

<Deveraux> looks back to Sissy and waits to see what she chooses.

<Sissy> points to the glass and nods to Erik, passing him money plus tip for another one which she brings with her to join them at their table. She nods, and looks among them before taking a seat on the outside. “I can speak, my hearing was lost in adulthood.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Ah, so you can read lips then as well?”

<<Vaclava>> jaw drops. if possible, she looks more horrified than she did at Martin’s situation. “You’re deafv? Oh. I’m sorry.”

<Deveraux> nods, “Very well. Let us all converse, then.” Since I’m not sure exactly of the situation he’ll either pull out a chair for Sissy or offer to help her into the booth or whatever they’re all sitting.

<Sissy> smirks a bit at that, “In English anyway. Have a bit more trouble with French and Romanian.”, she says to Cassian before looking over at Vaclava and nodding. “I uh- actually work with a few bands still. I do special effects for the stage.”, she says and then glances back to Deveraux as he helps her, “Thank you.”

<Martin> gets up and nods to the group, patting his pocket and listening before starting to go. “I need to take care of some things, but i will see you all again. Please take care.”, he says and sort of shuffles out the way he came in.

<Deveraux> nods and then will take a seat somewhat next to hers, setting his tophat on the table in front of him and leaning his walking stick against the table and his leg. He nods to Martin as he stands, “Be well.”

<<Vaclava>> “It vwas nice to see you again, Martin. Good efvening.”

■► Cassian ◄■ nods to Sissy and would then bid Martin farewell and take a seat again in the booth.

<Sissy> looks between the others for just a moment before taking out one of the cherries from her boozed up coke and nibbling on it thoughtfully.

■► Cassian ◄■ “So.. how are you doing, Sissy?”

■► Cassian ◄■ would say it aloud as he was signing too.

<<Vaclava>> “I’m actually Czech and vFrench, ifv you can beliefve it.” makes sure to enunciate her words so Sissy can read her lips. “My name is Vaclava Kapralova, it’s a pleasure to meet someone else vwhol lofves music.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Should tell them about the ballet you are working on. Maybe they will be interested.”

<<Vaclava>> “You think so? I’vfe composed the music, I simply need a talented choreagrapher…vwith a sense ofv…caprice. One vwho isn’t stuck in the past.”

<Sissy> sets her drink down, and signs/speaks, “I may know a few as I run in those circles. I will ask around.”

<Deveraux> seems content to observe and listen now.

<<Vaclava>> beams “Truly? I vwould be so gratefvul.”

<<Vaclava>> hands a card to sissy and devereaux

<Deveraux> takes the card and puts it in one of the pockets of his waistcoat.

<Sissy> smiles a little and takes the card, looking it over before putting it away and taking another drink from her glass.

<<Vaclava>> “Vwhat bands do you help out vwith, Sissy?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Deveraux, would it be rude to ask where are from and a bit about you? Of course, I would reciprocate.”

<<Vaclava>> smiles at cassian and devereaux “I think he’s a little bit vFrench.”

<Sissy> looks to Vaclava. “A few different ones. Mostly freelance here, and across both bridges. I set up and repair equipment mostly, and handle pryotechnics.”

<Deveraux> “One of those is easier to answer than the other. I am from what is now known as Iraq. What specifically is it that you wish to know, as asking a little bit about me is rather broad.”

<<Vaclava>> “Pyro…technics?”

<<Vaclava>> looks confused

■► Cassian ◄■ nods. ‘What is now known as Iraq’ was somewhat telling that this vampire might be older than the attire he was wearing that was in a sense also quite dating. “I see. Intriguing answer. Mesopotamian region?”

<Deveraux> nods in response to Cassian. “That is correct.”

<Sissy> smiles a little and nods to Vaclava. “Fireworks. Flares. People really get a kick out of the displays.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Well, you are quite the interesting person, Deveraux. I have not met anyone quite like you before. I hope you do not mind me saying so.”

<Deveraux> “I do not mind. You are merely stating what you have observed and feel about those observations.”

<<Vaclava>> “vFireworks! Really!!”

<<Vaclava>> looks interested “Now that…that vwould be an interesting addition to my ballet.”

■► Cassian ◄■ nods. “Thank you for not being offended by my curiosity.”

<Deveraux> “Seeking to understand the unknown drives research and acquiring new knowledge.”

<<Vaclava>> texts selyri “what do you think about fireworks?”

<Sissy> looks thoughtful, and then at Vaclava. “There are displays that could be done but uhm, no offense but in my experience… uhm, people like yourself don’t exactly get along with fire?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Were you then around for Babylon?”

<<Vaclava>> blinks….

<<Vaclava>> “People like myselfv….???”

<<Vaclava>> looks at sissy assessingly like what is her skin color, hair color, etc.

■► Cassian ◄■ “In reality, not much gets along with fire.”

<Selyri> texts back in French, “I like the colors, just not too close.”

<Sissy> blinks back at Vaclava and then shakes her head, taking a big drink of her soda, then nods to Cassian. “True. It wasn’t exactly pleasent for me either.”

<<Vaclava>> chuckles and smiles at sissy “So…is it something you can manage vwhere the sparks aren’t landing anyvwhere near the pervformers?”

<Deveraux> “You are skirting the question that will get you the information you seek, sir.”

<Sissy> looks thoughtful and nods. “I could set something up at a safe distance outdoors. But as this is likely indoor, that could be bad.”

<<Vaclava>> “It could be..vwould it be better ifv it vwere outdoors?”

<<Vaclava>> “I mean…I could vfind some outdoor vfenues…”

■► Cassian ◄■ “What is the question I should be asking then?”

<Deveraux> “My assumption could be incorrect, but you seem to be asking questions to ascertain my age. Am I wrong?”

<<Vaclava>> looks at devereaux apologetically “Vwell honestly…vwe just vwant to know how to relate, Monsieur.”

<Deveraux> “How to relate?”

<Sissy> shrugs a little bit, and glances over between the others… nope not getting involved in that little dance. Or, she wasn’t. “I prefer to relate in the present, rather than in the past.”, she then looks back to Vaclava directly. “How long is your ballet?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Yes, I was, and the time you come from. Do you mind sharing that information?”

<Deveraux> “You are the first that is bold enough to ask, even if you did require prompting to directly do it. I do not wish to share that information at this time.”

<<Vaclava>> “Deux heures…two hours.”

■► Cassian ◄■ nods. “Very well.”

<<Vaclava>> to devereaux “Relate meaning..how do vwe understand our position in relation to yours, Monsieur. Because honestly things these days change in a matter ofv moments…not decades or centuries.’

<Sissy> quirks her lips a bit, and then nods quietly as she thinks.

<<Vaclava>> “I am going to go out on a limb and assume, Monsieur Devereaux, that you are quvite a bit older than the rest ofv us….so vwe merely vwish to understand how to respect that age.”

<<Vaclava>> smiles pleasantly.

<Sissy> thinks possibly by not asking it a bizillion annoying questions but hey, that was probably her survival instinct talking.

<Sissy> quietly sips her rum and cherry coke.

■► Cassian ◄■ “Did you wish to ask of us anything?”

<Deveraux> looks at Vaclava, “My age should play no part in your interaction with me. I would simply ask that I am shown the same courtesy that I have shown everyone I have conversed with thus far.”

<Deveraux> returns his focus to Cassian, “You offered to reciprocate on your question about my origin if I were to answer. Would you be so kind as to do so, sir?”

<<Vaclava>> smiles “That is generous, Monsieur. Not efveryone is so accommodating.”

<<Vaclava>> “My own sire vwas rather impatient, honestly. He vwouldn’t disagree.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “I was around during the Spanish Inquisition. I was in it, quite literally and that is why I am here now. Supernatural beings were hunted rather ddogmatically then and those suspected of it were also dealt with harshly.”

<Sissy> remains quiet, half studying each of them at the table.

<Deveraux> nods, “That is not quite the same as where you are from, though. Do you mean to say that since you were a victim of the Spanish Inquisition you are from Spain?”

■► Cassian ◄■ “I was originally from Italy.”

<<Vaclava>> “Vwell ifv you are interested, Sissy, please, I vwould appreciate your skill…Monsieur Devereaux, it is a pleasure.” she leaves them to Cassian politely.

<Sissy> waves to Vaclava. “I will message you soon about a choreographer.”

<Deveraux> “Good evening, Miss Kapralova. Be well.”

<<Vaclava>> smiles beautfically “I honestly hope so. My dancer is…not someone I vwish to put on hold.”

<<Vaclava>> departs

■► Cassian ◄■ “Goodnight, Vaclava. Be well.”

■► Cassian ◄■ rises to his feet. “I am going to head out. It was nice to meet you, Deveraux, and it was nice to see you again, Sissy. Have a good night.”

<Deveraux> nods to Cassian, “I am sure we shall talk again. Perhaps you may yet get the answer to your question. Time will tell. Be well.”

■► Cassian ◄■ “Thank you. Be well too.”

<Sissy> waves to Cassian as he goes. “Goodnight then.”

■► Cassian ◄■ waves and then heads out to go do Cassian things. He did have some things to go research for Martin now, after all.

<Deveraux> waits for Cassian to leave and then turns to look at Sissy, “It appears we are left to converse in private after all.”

<Sissy> looks back over at him and nods in agreement. “So it does.”, she takes a sip of her drink before adding a question of her own. “How many languages do you know?”

<Deveraux> thinks for a moment before replying, “Thirty, but I know bits and pieces of almost one hundred.”

<Sissy> nods, though quirks her lips a bit. “That seems like a lot to keep track of without getting confused.”

<Deveraux> “For some, perhaps. I have studied a great many things over the years.”

<Deveraux> “How many do you know?”

<Sissy> finishes off her drink before looking over at Deveraux again. “Four. English, French, Sign, and Romanian.”

<Deveraux> nods, “I am fluent in all of those.” He pauses a moment, “Pyrotechnics, then. Interesting profession. What made you choose it?”

<Sissy> half shrugs, “When my friends at the time started their band i was kinda the wallflower… I wasn’t bad but wasn’t good enough to keep up with them as performers. So i kinda found my own thing. Which turned out to be good and bad… I did have my accident, though… it wasn’t an accident. Twice I have used it being attacked by something, one I know now was a werewolf… that

was when I lost my hearing on the right side.”

<Deveraux> “A werewolf. How did that happen?”

<Sissy> “I am not totally sure, it wasn’t after me. It was after Stephen and his sister… they never told me why and moved away not too long after.”, she stretches a little in the seat. “I am getting stiff in one spot and well, you should go get something to eat, right? So maybe it’s best to call it an night.”

<Deveraux> “Very well. Be well, Sissy. If you wish it I can see you home?”

<Sissy> looks at him, and then nods. “Yeah, sure. That’d be nice and it’s not far.”

<Deveraux> gets to his feet and offers her his arm as a gentleman would, “It would be my honor.”

<Sissy> smiles, and takes the offered arm, nodding politely to Erik on her way out with Deveraux. “Thank you.”

<Deveraux> will then escourt Sissy home as promised.