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Gabriel Quinn

 
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 Play another one for me, June 2270 || Alexis Dubois
Gabriel Quinn
 Posted on: Jun 12 2017, 12:38 AM
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age: 35 occupation: Manager - Red Door Bloodery organization: Calpulli (ish) posts: 359 gems: 2225

Morpheus

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The bottle sat atop the bar, near drained of contents as had been quietly devoured throughout the night whilst a woman on stage cooed to the microphone like it were a lover to the tune of the piano. Unemployment didn’t suit Gabriel, nor did the quiet suffering or pride that kept him exactly where he was; sinking, wallowing. The glass lifted to his lips again, habitually drinking for something to do, not that it would sate his thirst – it never did. He’d started the night with a live one in the back, taking his fill and actually paying the male for the offering before moving to the bottle. It was nothing overly prestigious, without relying on his sires’ purse strings his budget had become more frugal out of necessity.

He was no stranger to the establishment, in the early days when it was simply a place to buy a boutique blend of blood and wine, a necessity to buy some basics to have in his home, as shameful as those interactions had been as discomfort rattled him to his core to ask for blood. Now, he had practically lived here since returning to the city, since making every step conceivable to ruin every aspect of his life, to burn bridges no matter how big or small. It was a game, a dare for fate to set the limits.

He knew he had favoured Italy not for anything other than anonymity, the one thing he was denied in New Greenwich. Here all he had were ghosts, shadows and regret coalescing into a self-hatred and guilt. A smart man would note that the ghosts were playing games, what was perceived may not in fact be truth, a smarter man would heed that realisation; Gabriel was not that smarter man. No, he chose to wallow in misery, to blame and beat himself over what he was, what he enjoyed as if he owed the memory of his magic his eternal hatred of what had taken its place.

In a few short weeks he’d gone from having the world; potentially managing his sires club, an upmarket apartment and resources at his disposal to zero prospects, a decaying one bedroom apartment with plywood pinned to windows for daytime protection and a fast dwindling supply of cash. Still, he would not ask his sire for help.

There were books on magic and spellcraft which he shouldn’t have had in the first instance read, and re-read just in case there was some catch he’d missed years before when he was looking for a cure. He’d traipsed fae traders hoping for a cure, some mystical herb from another realm that would restore life where there was none. Apparently he wasn’t the first vampire to ask for such a thing in recent times where humanities freedom had come at the cost of a few shackles placed around their ankles. Everywhere he looked the answer was no. He didn’t not want to be a vampire, he didn’t despise it any longer, he was fast forgetting what magic felt like to have, to use, only knowing the glances, the whispers, the ghosts in his mind whispering ‘they’re judging you’.

“Just you and me.” The glass raised higher, staring at the thick crimson liquid in the glass, speaking to it, all too aware dawn was approaching but he wasn’t leaving the bottle unfinished, even knowing he’d wake the next night craving it once more. Gabriel downed the drink quickly, filled his glass once more, holding the bottle hovering above to catch those few precious last drops to fall as another song began, something sombre and bluesy to suit his mood.

@Jess
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Alexis Dubois
 Posted on: Jun 13 2017, 11:44 PM
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age: 257 occupation: Owner of the Red Door organization: posts: 14 gems: 1175

Jess

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These were her least favorite nights. Nights when the binge drinkers, sad saps of people who didn’t have anywhere else to go, and those trying to hit on whatever pair of legs came around were the only occupants in her normally busy establishment. Alex prided herself on being the best. She’d worked with her sire over the years, fine tuning the wines they offered and giving life to a business that brought a sense of familiarity, and routine to many of her patrons. They only had to stop in a few times a month to pick up a few bottles but they knew they’d always be met with the best they could find, at least for hundreds of miles. But it was a Wednesday. And only bar flies lasted that late into the night on a Wednesday.

For the time being, she was happy to catch up on some of her orders. There were vineyards she’d spent decades establishing relationships with and they always shipped her the best wine. Of course, there were other less official ways of getting her goods and while trading wine wasn’t illegal or even remotely shady, she kept it secret to protect her business relationships and recipes. The last thing she needed was competition. She’d gone centuries without any true competition and she liked to believe that was because of the nature of her product but she also wasn’t above undercutting prices if it meant staying on top. Commercialism would outlive them all.

Of course being the best meant keeping your product safe as well. All of her wines and blood bags were kept downstairs and she methodically and carefully kept an inventory of everything. Type O’s were stacked neatly next to AB’s, all categorized and labeled painstakingly perfectly. There were rooms downstairs where her patrons could grab a fresher snack but the store room was tucked away behind a locked door, inconspicuously undecorated, quite a contrast to the ‘private rooms’. The rooms had even doubled as a temporary hotel on occasions when a patron was too drunk to notice the sun coming up and she had to drag their asses to the cellar to sleep off the booze, for a price of course.

Traipsing up the stairs from counting her stock in the store room, she saw a familiar face sitting at the bar. Sliding behind the bar, she waved her employee off. ”Go close up then you can go home, I got this one.” Humans had their usefulness. As Alex clicked a button to draw the black out shades down from the windows, she glanced at the clock on the wall. After four. It wasn’t a record, she’d seen him there later. But it was close. Leaning against the bar, she wiped the counter down and tapped on the bar in front of him. ”Next time, try that with a bit of merlot.” Raising a perfectly manicured brow, Alex let a smile slip onto her lips and began stacking the glasses behind the counter. She wondered how much he’d pushed himself, she wondered that about all vampires though, she’d pushed herself to stay up a little past sunrise every day, gaining just a few more minutes at a time. She’d taken precautions, hence the blackout shades, but the only downside she’d ever seen to being a vampire was the catatonic state they entered during daylight hours.

At that point, there was barely a soul left in the blooderie, just Gabe, two servers, the singer, and a handful of patrons who wouldn’t be there too much longer. ”Get those few tables and you can go home, Jules.” She called over to the girl, who was sitting in front of the window, counting her tips. Her employees had only been attacked a few times over the years, she’d made sure to shut any aggression in her establishment down quickly. She might not have been a fan of humans but they performed better when they weren’t stressed. ”So… you got a name?” She questioned the man, already knowing the answer but willing to make any sort of small talk with him. He was handsome as hell, which wasn’t really out of the ordinary for her kind. Somehow vampirism just made people more attractive.

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Gabriel Quinn
 Posted on: Jun 14 2017, 07:55 PM
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age: 35 occupation: Manager - Red Door Bloodery organization: Calpulli (ish) posts: 359 gems: 2225

Morpheus

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Peering above the glass which rested against his lips, he watched the interaction between the human and the redhead, his gaze following to the source of the noise as the shutters were drawn across windows lest some errant ray of sun sneak through and fry them up. He said nothing, sipping, savouring the last of his drinks before he’d bolt home to his sparse apartment in what was once territorially known as witch land. Of course all of that had shifted when the humans broke free, boundaries once near enforced were now lax, and while the simple abode was hardly a fortress of safety, nor was he expected to live elsewhere based on what he was. He still faced whispers and stares from the ones that knew him before the plywood boards were nailed to the windows to hide the day, from days when there were frequent pizza deliveries to the door and not stockpiles of blood.

Gabriel could have so much better, had lived so much better but his self-destruct button had thrown all that his sire offered him in her face; a job, an apartment, wealth. No, he wallowed in a decrepit old building he’d once scrimped and saved for by resurrecting the dead for a fee; a skill lost on him now. It wasn’t just the material either he was content with obliterating; trust, friendships, happiness – if he hadn’t actively burnt every bridge, he was treading dangerously close to having only himself.

He glanced up when the nails tapped in front of him, glass set to the wayside briefly, even as his own fingers still clawed around it protectively. “Never liked wine.” His tone was cold and abrupt, bitter, but the smile that delivered the advice wasn’t exactly chastising so he offered a skewed smirk to try and lighten the blow of his words. Wine was for refined tastes and Gabriel had existed through his adult mortal life on a combination of take away and beer, or the occasional take home snack pack of ‘proper’ food from the Blackwoods. “I tried mixing it with Heineken once, ill advised.” That was not a pleasant experience he was keen to return to, he wasn’t sure if it was just that the blend of hops and blood was simply that repulsive or that expectation fell far below reality; maybe in a few decades or centuries when he couldn’t recall what a cold one tasted like his delicate senses may not be so easily offended.

Another swig, small as it was to preserve what remained as he moved to glance at his phone, or more precisely the time, even though his entire body seemed to have an inbuilt alarm warning him of the coming dawn – it was habit, an awfully mundane and human habit. “Gabe.” He even managed to quell the sass that would have answered with a simple yes, since such things were obvious. “Do you?” Real or staged, he figured long before when they officially didn’t exist multiple identities were the norm and the name the redhead gave might not even be her own. It wasn’t like he expected honesty from a vampire, so low he had habitually regarded them.

“I take it this is your place?” He mused having seen her a few times before, glancing about, making small talk as it were until he got told to go home like the servants. “Guess business is kind of booming now that we have to pay for it.” Holding his glass in hand, only the briefest flicker of frustration lacing his voice, the freedom of humanity of which he’d once fought alongside for hard to congratulate when he had planned to be a witch when they’d broken free, not their former oppressors – the discontent was ripe for exploitation. “Or find one willing.” Which the humans had clued on quick, even if it didn’t hurt, even if he twisted the sensation to one of pleasure and not pain, they still thought it smart to demand payment. In only a few short years his morality had muddied to the point where he danced somewhere between the mentality of predator and sympathiser, never quite finding footing on either side.

@Jess
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Alexis Dubois
 Posted on: Jun 16 2017, 12:14 AM
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age: 257 occupation: Owner of the Red Door organization: posts: 14 gems: 1175

Jess

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Alex didn’t normally find it hard to approach people. In fact, she never was at a loss for words. But seeing Gabe come in time and time again made her wonder what his story was over the months since she’d first seen him. She’d asked around, truthfully, no one had too much information. But he was one of the few who stuck around a few times a week, give or take and he wasn’t nearly as lucid as the others were peppered her classier clientele. So she’d done some digging, in her own way. She had enough hints that she could probably put his sad tale together and figure out whatever drove him to the bar but Alex was also someone who liked it better when people willingly gave her secrets, even if she coerced it out of them in more entertaining ways.

There were things about Gabe that didn’t sit well with Alex though. For instance, why was he living in a dump? Surely there were things he could do… people he could help that would put him up somewhere nice. Alex was good at collecting information, putting the dots together and learning what made people tick. Maybe that was why she wanted to get into his circle, she wanted to teach him how to enjoy himself. How not to hate life and make the most of what he was given. Hearing him talk, even if it was something as inane as his taste for liquor made her wonder if his tone wasn’t indicative of something darker, something more serious and daunting.

It did give her an idea though. With a smirk, she gave a quick shrug and from the edge of the bar, pulled out a bottle. It wasn’t very fancy looking but the liquid that poured from it was dark caramel. ”Brandy then, maybe?” She raised a brow, giving the two glasses in front of her a few quick stirs as she poured a thick red liquid into it. Sweeter liquors like brandy tended to cut down on the saltiness and metallic taste of blood, it made the whole process of drinking a little more enjoyable for her and a little gentler to guzzle down. ”They taste sweeter when they’re having fun…” She smiled softly, sliding one over to him as she held one up for herself. It had been quite a while since she’d drank blood by force. She treated the humans that worked for her and supplied her stores well, mostly because it made more sense for business. Happier employees wouldn’t fight, they’d come back, and they wouldn’t go to other blooderies. Plus, it also kept clientele happy when it was a calmer atmosphere.

”Alexis… and it’s on the house.” She grinned, the smile lines by her eyes that had been forever immortalized on her face since for centuries past wrinkling just slightly. ”Alex, if you prefer though…” She had no reason to lie, she had no real enemies save the competition. She’d done well for herself and had managed to do so without getting too much dirt on her face. And anyone that really knew her… besides her sister and sire… were long gone. Taking a sip, she paused a moment to savor it, eyes closed as she bit her lip and muttered, ” Exemplaire.” And out slipped a perfect French accent, one she’d practiced doing away with ever since coming to the states.

Business was booming but she accredited it to intelligent marketing and good management rather than forceful policies. ”Co-owner… but mostly just me. And… it’s really what people don’t pay for that keeps them coming back.” They may pay for expensive drinks and clean blood but what they get is a safe haven, one where they’re not judged, where they can be around other vampires and not feel the sting of disappointment and hate. And there’s also the added bonus of quiet affirmation. If they keep it civil, she has no problem with what they do so long as her girls aren’t hurt. Do you miss the chase?”
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Gabriel Quinn
 Posted on: Jun 16 2017, 05:17 PM
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age: 35 occupation: Manager - Red Door Bloodery organization: Calpulli (ish) posts: 359 gems: 2225

Morpheus

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“Brandy?” He couldn’t help but query, what was he, eighty? Gabe said nothing however as the glasses were poured, first with liquor and then of course the key ingredient that would not offend his apparent delicate tastes. Plus it seemed the woman was making it a challenge to tempt him with some concoction; if only she knew how easy that was where blood was involved. “They?” He queried curiously, matching her smile as if it were contagious. “Is that something you do, cheer them up then hook them up to a needle?” The tone itself had been neutral but his words were laced with some remnant of disgust which would rear its head, usually when he was on route to his usual denial. “Sorry, I didn’t mean…” To offend the pretty little corpse.

“Thanks… Alex.” The offer was there as his smile remained intact, carefully noting the small lines that creased at her eyes, studying the face to try and gage an age she’d been turned, anything beyond that he could hardly begin to guess. His own sire was what, six, seven hundred years old and a one-time princess, who knew what secrets Alex or any other vampire held; not that he’d ever taken the chance to sit, talk or befriend many and not any in this city. The drink at least was… interesting, a second swig following immediately to drink up the new flavours that wasn’t merely a mild hint of what something used to taste masked in blood but a new taste entirely.

“French?” Gabe queried, it sounded about as much as he’d heard in movies, but his languages were limited to English with a smattering of Italian from his sojourn in Italy and Latin from that one time he was a witch and used the long dead language for commanding spells. “What is that?” Whatever it was they didn’t pay for. Gabriel attributed his frequent visits to a multitude of reasons, everywhere almost offered blood in some capacity but it was only places like this that seemed exclusively geared towards his kind which offered him some safety from judgment.

Do you miss the chase?

He swallowed hard, clasping at the glass and staring at the red head, Alex for the longest moment in time almost as if he were trying to decipher the meaning from one language to another. Breaking the stare, Gabe glanced about to gage just how many ears could listen in, none close enough who had the skills to listen in on the conversation, no vampires in earshot. “What sort of question is that?” He shot back, buying time, hovering somewhere he wasn’t sure he was even comfortable in. Lids twitched, knuckles white as he held his glass like a damn life line, minute hints that he was still so very young at this dead game. “Yes, I guess.” Quieter though, ashamed, the darted glance up at Alex proved his guilt, even before it was outlawed, or at least heavily regulated to a permission and pay scheme he’d revelled in the hunt and he’d never made peace with it.

“Do you?” A recurrent theme reared its head of him simply shooting back her questions, though this one came delivered with a tempting tone and wry smile that it was simply some secrets between friends, even if he would argue he would never count another vampire a friend. “I’m surprised any of you even adhere to the rules.” The disassociation, the clear difference distinguished in his mind between himself and the others, it took time and practice to include himself in with them – and acceptance which was far too slow coming. Another swig before he corrected himself. “Us I guess, since I’m one of you now.” Held with all the false show of joy that came with that, which was far too much insight than he usually offered, that he should but it was nearing dawn, he had been drinking for hours and well maybe it wasn’t so bad to gage if what he was feeling was normal for their kind.

”Cheers. To living in the only place that muzzles us.” No bitterness, none at all as he raised the glass and finished it one clean gulp, licking away the remnants on his lips. The freedom he fought for, that he gave his magic away for not nearly as tantalising when he was one of the predators.

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Alexis Dubois
 Posted on: Jun 20 2017, 12:04 AM
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age: 257 occupation: Owner of the Red Door organization: posts: 14 gems: 1175

Jess

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Maybe her tastes were a bit more aged than his but she’d just happened to figure out the right ways to mix blood into the right drinks so that it masked the acidity and saltiness of blood. Brandy happened to do a fine job of that. ”You know… before the war, people sold their plasma for money... they sold their blood for research. It isn’t much different… and I pay them well. Drawing their blood is no worse than getting a shot. It’s not painful and as long as they eat soon after, they don’t really get weak. It’s very… by the book. I’ve even put them on regimens to make sure they don’t sell their blood more than they should.” She paused a moment, squinting her eyes and pursing her lips as she tried to recall some facts from medical texts she’d read when getting their blooderie up to code. ”It’s a three month minimum between sales… I don’t let them sell to me a moment before.” She was used to the judgmental tone, it wasn’t the first time she’d been confronted by disgust and even anger but she’d done what she could to make her business beneficial for everyone, humans included. Not that it really mattered to her how well they did but without humans, she’d have no food. And she wanted to live.

So a witch turned vampire… she’d seen a few like him before. They never really settled into their undead life. Worshipping nature versus being the literal dead walking the earth, it was a bit of a contradiction. Her sister had a whole slew of trouble with it to begin with too but she learned to cope. Mostly, Alex just assumed their sire’s hold was stronger over her sister and it had eventually won out over her darker tendencies. Their sire was old… old as balls. He’d seen things and done things that were pretty unspeakable, even to Alex and her sister. But she’d never bothered trying to find a cure. There was none. There was no hope of going back to being human and why would she want to? She had nothing left in that life. ”Hmm… I do what I can for handsome strangers.” She chuckled quietly, taking a few sips of her own drink.

She nodded and tilted her head as he questioned her. She could tell him the truth, that she had private rooms downstairs where more well to do vampires could bring their human pets or rent new ones for a while. But she preferred to tease. ”My agreeable and friendly disposition. What else?” After all, she’d always been a fan of the chase, even in harmless flirtation. Although she wasn’t sure it was really that harmless. He desperately needed a good time and she was more than willing to teach him how to have fun again. ”Les meilleurs amoureux viennent de France.” She spoke in an almost offhanded way, shrugging a shoulder as she stacked more cups neatly on the shelves behind the counter. She was a bit surprised in herself that she remembered her native tongue. Some things you never lost, though.

She glanced down at his hands as he struggled to pull his grip back from the glass. Without hesitation, she reached down and ran her fingers across his wrist, brushing her nails lightly to distract him from whatever struggle was going on in his head and bring him back to her. He was young, so young and still so volatile. He just needed someone to guide him who wasn’t obligated to do so. ”It’s okay if you do… most of us do.” She offered a small, comforting smile. She was so very tempted to use her powers but she’d yet to really hone them and prying into his memories just seemed a bit too cruel. Maybe if someone asked her… but she’d only ever attempted to tamper with her own memories. The memories of her. She’d succeeded in blurring them but you could never really lie to yourself.

As he raised his glass she nodded, quickly downing her own and grabbing his before stepping away a few paces to clean them in the sink and leave them to dry. ”Did you ever live outside of New Greenwich?” There was a great big world out there, some of it wasn’t so bad. And though she hadn’t gone on too many trips in her undead life, it was worth noting that there were places where it was more acceptable to be savage and others where the rules were tighter. If he hadn’t experienced much of the world, well… maybe she could convince him he should.
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Gabriel Quinn
 Posted on: Jun 20 2017, 07:04 PM
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age: 35 occupation: Manager - Red Door Bloodery organization: Calpulli (ish) posts: 359 gems: 2225

Morpheus

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“I wouldn’t know…” About any war times, the trace of bitterness remained, but matched with a glimmer of a smirk some of the edge had been neutered. “I’ve only been alive thirty-five years.” Which in itself was somewhat of a lie; alive for twenty-nine, the risen dead for nearly six. It also gave Alex more insight than he knew, how old he was in their terms – potentially dangerous if half the population weren’t already aware that he was the latest fledgling of the mafia queen. As it was, there was no secret to his young years, and his mannerisms, his mood and struggles were testament enough on their own without his admission. “So I just remember a time where my only concern was whether the human was owned or not, not whether I was paying a fair price, or if they’d let me.” After all, it wasn’t like Tigers waltzed up and sought permission to slaughter.

“I didn’t mean to judge, it’s just different being on this side of the fence.” Especially when one championed the release of the humans from their shackles only to find he preferred the relative comfort and ease of keeping them bound now that he needed to feast on them. “Takes some getting used to I guess." Gabriel needed to shut the hell up, opening up to a vampire, one undoubtedly, obviously older than him given her wartime stories, and commenting on how he struggled with the life given to him, passing judgement even when he proclaimed otherwise.

He had used blood once or twice before in spell casting, by all means it was a powerful ingredient but those spells and practices were outlawed, the use of human or any beings blood strictly forbidden; it was animal blood he’d practiced with. There were tales of witchcraft steeped in blood, entire practices throughout time which favoured blood but they were etched in antique tomes he shouldn’t have had, but somehow had acquired through his store, the one he no longer owned. The books however, he still had those.

“Stranger? I practically live here don’t I?” He laughed, accepting the compliment quietly, eyeing the red head up for good measure to gage if it were simple conversation of a shrewd businesswoman charming patrons to part with more cash or something more. “You’re a vampire.” He offered tongue firmly in cheek, agreeable and friendly generally weren’t their attributable traits. “I don’t know, maybe you’ve got a dungeon downstairs with humans strung and drained, beats me.” He’d seen something similar in Italy, entire soirees dedicated to the hunt, the bloodletting and indulgence of the entire feast. He had attended on such party, one on the milder scale that simply offered open bloodletting of anything that wasn’t vampire on the provision it could walk away at the end, and he’d enjoyed it more than he’d care to admit.

“I don’t understand a word of that.” If he had the mind to recall, he’d probably try his hand at Italian, or even a random Latin word which would have evoked some will to levitate, no good it would do him; but he was beyond that little bit tipsy where his mind just wasn’t up for that level of strenuous activity of relative smarts and worldliness. “I know!” Sharper than intended, his fingers twitching and near grabbing her hand to keep it there as nails trailed across his skin, the glance heated as he relinquished her and his glass. “It’s complicated.” He offered, one of his usual remarks to describe or explain away something so simple that wasn’t. That his mind warred with who he was versus who he’d been and the ghosts at his back which always watched, always judged.

Don’t become one of them, not truly one of them. Drink blood, but don’t enjoy it. Never forget what you were before, forever mourn your loss. Hate it.

“Italy.” He raised his brow, as brief a sojourn as it was when he had an expanse of years ahead of him, when a good portion of that time had been spent on sea there and back fleeing the Resistances’ uprising. “I was born here.” Which explained his haunted memories. “We only returned a few months ago, now that things have… settled.” We, him, his sire, her group of misfits, Gabriel standing and pushing his chair out enough and lifted the corner of his shirt just enough to show the branding of the snake tattoo on his abdomen; everyone knew what the serpent meant – Calpulli, and its leader was his eternal mistress. “But that’s all, other than a few stops en route, it was never safe for witches to travel, the cost of protection more than we could ever afford unless you, I don’t know bound yourself to a vampire or fae with nomadic tendencies I suppose.” He pulled his seat back in, roughly tucking the shirt back into place, at this hour it didn’t much matter. “And you? How long have you been here Miss France?” The smirk tugging at his face, a slew of nicknames he’d probably call her now, none of them her actual name.

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Alexis Dubois
 Posted on: Jun 25 2017, 02:43 AM
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age: 257 occupation: Owner of the Red Door organization: posts: 14 gems: 1175

Jess

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Thirty five? He looked younger than that, Alex assumed he’d been turned pretty young. It was almost sad, although she herself was twenty seven when she’d been turned. She supposed it didn’t matter what age you were, if someone was adamant that you were going to be their next sire or pet or lackey, age wouldn’t stop them. She did wonder what he was like before he turned. Was he this angsty and lonely? She’d been in New Greenwich for quite a while and she remembered how ruthless the race wars had become at times. He’d seen war, whether he realized it or not. It might not have been on quite as grand a scale as she’d experienced but it had touched their city. ”I’ve been alive for a while… I’ve seen some shit. But just because we’re in the mix now… doesn’t mean there was ever a time when humans weren’t preyed on… even by other humans.” She remembered people doing pretty despicable things taking advantage of people trying to get to safety.

Alex shrugged a shoulder, pursing her ruby lips quickly as she gave a quiet sigh. ”I’ve been judged for less. I understand why people think it’s repulsive… I just don’t agree with them.” She leaned forward again on her elbows, crossing her arms. ”Grass is always greener, right?” Perhaps it was easier to think that vampires were evil, that they killed without remorse and didn’t care who was killed in their way. It was easier to see them as monsters for most, even some of their own kind. But as he hadn’t taken a long walk outside in the morning, surely he also wanted to live as much as she did. Perhaps there was more hope for him than she’d thought originally. Perhaps he wasn’t as angst ridden as he pretended. Maybe she could really bring out his enjoyment of being a vampire again.

Not everyone could shake their pasts as easily as Alex had. Or at least as she pretended she had. It was easier to deal with loneliness when you’d been centuries removed from it. She understood why he was still mourning the loss of his humanity and his magic but she cared less and less for that very human sense of suffering. But he was still so young and he was barely a vampire. Given a few hundred years, he’d learn to abandon his right feel the loss of his mortal life and he would eventually embrace his immortal one wholeheartedly.

Her gaze flickered to catch his and she bit her bottom lip, stifling a chuckle back. Maybe he wasn’t a complete stranger but he was amusing and so far, fun to play with. ”You might… but we’d never met before. So you were a stranger. Now you’re not.” She found that generally speaking if one were to indulge in conversation with the goal of getting someone to drop their walls, you had to also be willing to divulge a few secrets. Nothing too personal and nothing too incriminating, just things that stemmed from having common sense as well as good business sense. Would she tell him everything that went on in the rooms downstairs? Of course not. But some secrets didn’t hurt. ”Well they’re not strung up… and everything’s consensual.” She watched as the rest of her employees began to leave, the few vampires in the bar stumbling off soon after.

After he confessed his lack of knowledge of French, she nodded, slipping around the bar and sliding into the stool beside his. ”Well… when you figure out what I said I’ll let you test the validity of it.” She purred, scarlet tresses tumbling down her shoulders as she settled into her seat. There were ways to deal with the blood lust. Alcohol was one of them. Sex was another. ”Once you find a good distraction, you’ll be set. It won’t feel as hard.” She waved her hand and her lips twitched into a wavering smile. ”I work… that’s my distraction. I’ve built this place up over the years, made it reputable and safe for everyone… my sire really isn’t here to help. Off fighting his fights… So it’s really just me.”

So that’s why he mourned his humanity so bad. This city reminded him of everything he used to be. She had the luxury of moving a world away after being turned so it made the transition easier. If you weren’t faced with the reality of losing yourself and who you used to be every day, you never really had to learn to cope. At least not until you settled into it. And if you were his age and only left for a few years, coming back would hit you like a ton of bricks. She’d assumed that he was with Zala and his tattoo confirmed that. Of course she didn’t hesitate to take the opportunity to check out as much as she could when he lifted his shirt. ”Italy… oh… I traveled through there. Did you ever get to see the canals in Venice? I saw them during the day once when I was thirteen. Then again after I turned. Oh and the blue grotto…” She was gushing but traveling was one of the things she’d really enjoyed before. Seeing the world, learning the secrets people held onto from all sorts of different civilizations and time periods. ”I’ve been here… almost two centuries? I’ve traveled occasionally, we didn’t build this place right away. But I was a military brat before… so I got thrown around to a lot of different places and schools when the war started.” She paused, her smile slipping back onto precisely colored lips. ”It might be touristy but there are some sights I think everyone should see. Maybe even the view from my place.”
@Morpheus
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Gabriel Quinn
 Posted on: Jun 25 2017, 08:14 PM
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age: 35 occupation: Manager - Red Door Bloodery organization: Calpulli (ish) posts: 359 gems: 2225

Morpheus

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“For a while…” Gabriel mused, quietly scoffing, or attempting to as the woman was vague with regaling him with the secrets of her age. For them, he supposed it gave them power; the older you were, the stronger you supposedly were. Was this woman like his own sire, a master of her own right, the million dollar question hovering above his own head whether he too would inherit some boon, some pathetic excuse of an ability which from all his research, paled in comparison to what he had lost. Resurrecting the dead? Vampires only had a finite amount of times they could try, and what they brought back weren’t the living, but others infected with the same curse. Telekinesis? Not a chance, not even close, entirely off the table. Not that he’d perused documented examples of their known abilities to see if it was worth even hoping for...

His gaze narrowed on her but he could not protest that the grass wasn’t greener; that he was fine and happy staying what he had once been. The details and circumstances of his turning were hidden, publicly he had chosen this and now he was just a spoiled child struggling to adjust with changes he simply couldn’t comprehend. Never mind that he’d faced days of torture before calling upon his lifeline, who in turn bargained for his life with one caveat; he be her fledgling. “Right.” Was about all he could sum up in response, truthfully not having an answer what was better, magic or blood. He mourned the loss of one now, had the tables been turned, would he mourn the loss of this.

“Yeah now you have a name to call me when you kick me to the curb.” Offered with a smirk, though perhaps the tattoo had stilled any insistence on causing too much grief to the baby brat of Calpulli. Well technically. Gabriel still remained hers and would be for another two hundred years, even if he had turned his back on them, that would remain more permanent than any magical token inked into his skin. “Now I’m intrigued…” On two levels, his own personal curiosity and the beast which would always thirst for the hunt, his head craning to watch as the few figures remaining began to filter out, ready to stand, pack and take his own turn to leave when she began to speak once more. “Maybe you could write it down so I’d remember to consult Mr Google when I get home.” Because honestly, he couldn’t even recall the jumble of words that had fallen from her lips.

It was the way though in which she’d spoken the words that made him need to find the meaning behind them. “I could probably find better distractions than work.” He prodded, testing the waters before narrowing in on her talk of her sire, Gabriel oddly curious about how they all worked. For all her reputation, Quetzala wasn’t entirely cruel, a fact he’d reiterated to concerned friends countless times even if whatever bound them was far, far more complicated; such as her recent taking to barking orders he could not disobey. His own sire had regaled him with tales of her own sire which differed vastly, so needless to say he was curious about Alex’s history.

“Yeah, I sent some people out to take some photos during the day but….” All Gabriel saw was the ancient city by night, like everything else he’d see for the rest of his potentially long life. “What?” Two centuries. Here. Was the city even that old? He’d heard it had once gone by a different name, some of the architecture remained that attested to a world before the Ferocious had laid claim to the landscape. Quetzala was ancient in his eyes, she never spoke of schools or war, but Alex seemed to cross that divide. “Which war?” He never had been particularly studious and there had been plenty of wars alike long before the one between the various things that went bump in the night.

He swallowed hard, eyes wide; all visible human reactions as the other vampire spoke again. “Really?” That had not quite been his intention for the night. Given his nature, his inherent predilections he had become a recluse in intimate natures, too frightened he’d hurt or kill or anything that couldn’t fight, or bite back. That had well and truly come to bite him in the ass in recent months, but Alex…. Was a vampire and the smile that curved on his lips foretold the answer long before words. “I guess I should be the judge of that then?” The smirk grew, eyes bleeding into red from blue. “But the sun will come up soon…” Which left them little time for fun, but there was always the following night. He warred with bringing up the obvious issues he faced, the role blood would play. “Are we taking a few bottles?” Or did the master sommelier have her own private stock, bottled or alive to draw from; the latter all the more appealing – as much as he tried to push the idea from his mind. ”Maybe you can tell me what you said in French too.” Because it was mildly bothering him that he just had no fucking clue.

@Jess
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Alexis Dubois
 Posted on: Jun 28 2017, 12:29 AM
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age: 257 occupation: Owner of the Red Door organization: posts: 14 gems: 1175

Jess

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With him being so young, she wondered how much he knew of vampire lore and the things they were capable of. Did he know that vampires could grow into some fairly astonishing powers? Maybe his mob boss had some awe inspiring powers herself. Alex didn’t have problems with anyone, she tended to avoid getting on the wrong side of powerful vampires but she was intrigued by the abilities that developed from being turned. She’d long suspected her own sire of having some sort of mind or memory manipulation just like she did but he’d never spoken of it if he did. Still, there were bits of her life she found a bit foggy and it would make more sense for him to possess similar abilities. Then again, she wasn’t exactly an expert herself. ”You’ve been through some shit too, I assume.” She peaked an eyebrow, trying not to let on that she indeed knew more than she actually did.

She could pry into his memories, she could figure out what he was hiding. But that felt a bit too much like cheating. And she wasn’t in the market for turning anyone into a zombie accidentally using her powers irresponsibly. She’d get the information out of him one way or another, store it away like a hoarder of people’s back stories. Before she was even turned she was impeccable at remembering facts, dates, anything she’d read. If they hadn’t been in the middle of a war, she probably would’ve been considered as having eidetic memory. But that was a talent that a different age considered useful. Within her life, she’d mostly had to focus on surviving and then controlling her bloodlust and desire to kill. ”I wonder if it was easier… when no one knew vampires existed… But neither of us were born in that age.”

She grinned, tilting her head and glancing away, ”I never said I wanted to kick you out. I think you’re worth keeping around.” If nothing else than he was exceptional eye candy. She didn’t want to get on the Calpulli’s bad side but if they couldn’t pick who they talked to or slept with, well… what kind of life was that? Besides, she wasn’t actually planning anything dastardly for Gabe. She took a moment to glance the rest of him over now that she’d moved around the bar. Strong shoulders and arms, he still had some color to his skin, a bit tawny, but he had intensely blue eyes. She’d envied people that had blue eyes at one point in her life, she’d always considered them more attractive than her plain hazel ones. When he spoke again, her attention snapped back to what he was saying and she turned to grab one of her business cards from the little holder on the bar, grabbing a pen from the pocket of her shirt. She quickly wrote down what she’d said, along with her personal number. ”You figure it out? And I’ll send you my address.” She smiled, holding it out for him.

”I could name a few distractions right now.” She agreed, pushing back thoughts of what she could do to him on that very bar they were sitting in front of. ”But let’s save that for another night.” He’d distracted her for long enough and they didn’t have too much longer before the sun would rear its ugly head and force them to sleep.

With a quick shrug , Alex tossed her hair over her shoulder and leaned back into the bar. ”What? Don’t I look like someone who’s two hundred fifty seven?” She quirked her lips into a small smile. Was there really a need to be so mysterious and not give her exact age? She wasn’t so sure he had any intentions of ever exploiting her. He just didn’t seem the type and so far she’d been pretty good at reading people in her life. ”The BIG war… the blood wars. I was born at the beginning of it all. Turned at twenty seven with my sister.” The only real regret she had of becoming a vampire was that her sister didn’t get a choice in the matter. No matter how much they’d become estranged at times or weren’t speaking, she cared more for her than anyone else in the world. And she knew how hard it was for her sister to deal with losing her magic, so empathizing with Gabe wasn’t very hard at all.

It was almost cute how he seemed to slip into very human reactions and abandon the lustful gaze most vampires possessed when presented with intimate propositions. She couldn’t help but grin and chuckle, nodding. ”Really… but another night. I’ve still got to close up here.” She moved to stand, and nodded. ”Don’t you worry about anything… I’ve got everything we’d need.” Blood, blindfolds… wherever the night took them, really. She stood before him, pressing her hands into his knees, her stature almost dwarfed by his. ”And if you really want to impress me…..” She let the words hang in the air, her lips brushing quickly against his jawline before she pulled away just as quickly, walking toward the back. ”I like peonies. Romance me. Saturday.” With a smirk, she took a glance behind her as she pushed the door open to the back, turning out the lights in the bar.
@Morpheus
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Gabriel Quinn
 Posted on: Jun 28 2017, 08:23 PM
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age: 35 occupation: Manager - Red Door Bloodery organization: Calpulli (ish) posts: 359 gems: 2225

Morpheus

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He quietly laughed at the comment, a private joke he’d not share, couldn’t share. It would paint him and his sire traitors, even long before he’d been a vampire his actions with the resistance had been a crime. Sure, the Master of the City held more sway over him now than as a witch but overthrowing rule and letting loose on anarchy was still a crime he would have been put to death for, and almost had been. “Maybe.” He supposed even on a lesser scale he could list off the breach as an appropriate shit to wade through, a valid excuse as any.

“Yes.” Gabriel needn’t have been born, or turned in an age where they were the stuff of nightmares and secrets, and whether it held any truth or not, he would have preferred that anonymity, that callous and cruel fleeing into oblivion from all he’d loved; it was easier than facing them, he knew that now. “I had to sit in front of my best friend and show her what I was, who was responsible.” Because either through his own inability to say that word in the early months, vampire, or Alana’s insistence she see the moment it happened. “I had to face my parents and tell them their lineage died.” The pain on his parents faces wouldn’t have been any more had their only son simply vanished without a trace. No, it was all easier if they thought you a missing person, Italy had shown him that freedom and he longed for it once more.

Oh he’d be back, kicked out or not.

“So it’s a game?” He mused, flipping the business card over in his fingers a few times, reciting the words to memory, as butchered as his internal pronunciation would find it. He was tempted to pull his phone from his jacket pocket then and there, type the words into search and claim his prize already but he refrained, lips curling to smirk at his own thoughts of distractions and what better place than a bloodery that stocked all the vital ingredients for a good night. “Most vampires don’t freely give their age.” A final flick of the card and it was pushed into his pocket for safe keeping, he was legitimately going to chase this call. “Unless you think you have the power behind that number?” Strong bloodline, a Master power or in the least powerful connections. Gabriel didn’t hide his age, most would know of it for who his sire was, but he’d hardly scream it loud enough for the ignorant to hear.

“Your sister is a vampire? How?” Gabriel knew he was lucky to have survived the process, though he’d sometimes war with whether it was luck or curse. His sire had created another fledgling only years before, Gabriel her second but there was still that increased chance that so soon, so close, he wouldn’t wake as one of them. He knew there would come a day (or night) where he would speak openly and with ease about times centuries gone as if they were mere months past, but his mind was still caught in the mortal concepts of time and Alexis’ tale was just, it was still strange to speak to people who live through pages in history.

“Is playing hard to get a game for you?” It probably was for most women, and men but he’d spent the last few minutes with the expectation of a win, the delay caused an all too human reaction in his features; disappointment. Blood was all he’d need, the one thing which kept him from ever having a normal relationship with anything that couldn’t bite back, gaze drifting down to her as she grazed against his haw. “I don’t do romance.” He mused with a smirk, two could play that game, and with that he stood and followed the vampire out, mocking a bow before traipsing off towards the old Midtown where his bare bones apartment was.

@Jess
(nudge me on discord when you've read it & I'll move it to archives; I'll get the text thread up soon)
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