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  #51  
Unread 12th of March, 2013, 21:29
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Rebecca sighed softly, or at least performed the motion - no air escaped her lungs. She looked between both Kindred, and shook her head. "I'm afraid that mentioning my name in your investigations would afford you little benefit: the Prince has passed his judgment, and the very idea that he would allow further investigations into the matter to continue after the fact is unbelievable. So no, I would think it best if my name were omitted from any dialogue you have entirely.

"As to whether this is indeed Kindred, I'm afraid that's the case."
The Ventrue lifted further files away from the table and handed them across to Isabella. They were a mixture of police reports, hand-written notes, and crime scene photography. "All of the victims were exsanguinated, and the bodies broken and maimed using strength only possible by one of our own. It was the Sebastian Powell himself who investigated the murders on the kine when they arose in greater number - he feared that such careless feeding could become a Masquerade breach. Unfortunately, he was unable to link any specific Kindred directly to the attacks.

"Here is the address of the house in which Sebastian Powell was murdered and Derek Wilson recovered."
Rebecca said, handing a small piece of lined paper to Gabriel. "When you decide to head there - and I suggest you do so as quickly as you are able - I will contact the Anarch and tell him to meet you. You are free to take away any of the notes I have handed you, though I ask that they be burned when you are done with them; you may also ask any questions you may have of me now, though I confess that my own time here is limited."
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  #52  
Unread 13th of March, 2013, 10:51
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"A few questions actually," Gabriel said. "How do we contact you when we have something worth reporting? Do you want periodic updates, or do you just want to know when it is done? What do you plan to do with the knowledge once you have it? And, can we at least have your chauffeur drop us back where he picked us up? I at least, left my car near that location?"
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  #53  
Unread 13th of March, 2013, 22:46
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Ize took the files from Rebecca and placed them on her lap, opening the first one on the pile. She thumbed through the various photos and scanned the witness testimonies as she listened to Gabriel’s further questions. She began to sway from side to side in her chair, small movements at first and then more pronounced, muttering to herself in a whisper; “Vostro destro Joseph, questo finirà in lacrime.”

Stilling herself and placing the folders on the floor she shook her head. “No questions, save one, if you are able. Why Derek Wilson?”
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  #54  
Unread 14th of March, 2013, 23:00
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Rebecca shrugged. "I don't know why Derek Wilson was used as a scapegoat. Maybe he was in the wrong place at the wrong time, or maybe his status as a fledgling marked him as easy to manipulate; or maybe someone was trying to target him specifically, or his sire indirectly, with the blame. Until we discover the who, I fear we cannot discover the why.

"As to how I can be contacted..." Rebecca reached into her pocket and handed Gabriel a small business card. A mobile number was provided, along with the address of a small, but successful motor vehicle dealership. On the back, in ink, was another contact number. "Use the phone number on the back - I reserve that for personal matters. Feel free to update me as and when something important comes up; otherwise, you're free to report back when the matter's concluded."

A moment of quiet passed. The two kine continued their discourse, seemingly oblivious of the presence of the three predators nearby; the fire continued to roar soundlessly, and its shadows danced valiantly across the walls. In the far distance, a car backfired.

At last Rebecca spoke again. "I do not intend on handing your findings back to the Prince. I have my own means of dealing with dangerous Kindred - that should be a sufficient enough answer for you, I trust." Her eyes glistened as she smiled at Gabriel, her manner now entirely business-like. "The Prince is satisfied that the case is closed. Why divide his attentions when the matter can be dealt with quietly?

"You are, of course, welcome to catch a ride back to your territories, or wherever else you wish, with Alek. He will be waiting for you outside."
With that, Rebecca rose to her feet, signalling the end of the discussion. She offered her cold, pale hand to both Kindred - a reassuringly human gesture, despite the monstrous contents of their discussion.
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  #55  
Unread 15th of March, 2013, 11:21
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Gabriel took the proffered hand, and raised it to his lips with a slight bow and a sardonic smile.

"Till we meet again," he said. He had already placed the card inside his jacket pocket, before turning to exit the club with Isabella on his arm.
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  #56  
Unread 15th of March, 2013, 12:20
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“Thank you for your time Rebecca, have a pleasant night.” Ize almost did a half curtsy to the Ventrue as Gabriel kissed her hand, smiling placidly. Taking a moment to gather the files from the floor she slipped her arm into the Toreador’s, casting one last look about the place. She caught the eye of one of the businessmen as they passed their table. She met his gaze and nodded enthusiastically at him, as if she was agreeing with something he’d said.

“I know right Jack?! Who BUYS this crap anyway?” She exclaimed loudly.

The man stared blankly after them.
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  #57  
Unread 16th of March, 2013, 07:14
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As Gabriel performed his old-fashioned gesture of respect, Rebecca adorned her business-like smile and considered both members of the coterie one last time. Once he had finished, the Ventrue returned to her seat and said in parting, "Good evening to you both. I hope your investigations prove fruitful."

Moving towards the exit, the questioning stare of the aging kine following them out, the two Kindred embraced the cold night air and made towards the sleek outline of the black Bentley, which had been parked just around the corner of the Gentry Club. The driver, Alek, departed the vehicle upon their approach and opened up the passenger doors for them.

"Should I return you to your respective domains?" he asked politely as he climbed back into the car. The engine purred to life, but he made no effort to proceed anywhere until given direction.

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  #58  
Unread 19th of March, 2013, 06:08
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The night air was crisp and Ize could feel the gentle breeze playing with the tendrils of her hair. She stood outside the club in the middle of the strange area and looked around nervously, sure Gabriel was there and they were most probably in the middle of Camarilla territory but still… She looked to her companion who appeared to be deep in thought. This was a night she didn't want to be too far from her domain, or out of the warm arms of a languishing mortal, but there were things that needed to be discussed between them before she hid herself away.

"Should I return you to your respective domains?"

She ignored the driver’s query and turned to Gabriel, “I suggest il mio angelo, let the driver take us to where he dropped us off? If you could then drive me to my destination, it would give us time to talk in your car, away from,” She paused and flicked a meaningful glance at Alek. “Hooting owls and scurrying lizards.”
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  #59  
Unread 19th of March, 2013, 12:22
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Gabriel smiled at the driver. "Back to where you retrieved us would be fine," Gabriel replied. He spent the rest of the drive in silence, studying the passing city life as it sped past.

"I'll be happy to drive you to your heart's desire, Ize," he said.
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  #60  
Unread 19th of March, 2013, 21:09
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Alek nodded, watching both Kindred for a moment in the rear-view mirror. Direction now provided, he returned his gaze to the road and caressed the Bentley down its aisles. It was a silent, graceful animal: a perfect contrast to the loud, boisterous glamour of the city around them.

The nightlife was now in full swing, and kine wandered the sidewalks in abundance, carrying with them laughter, tears, screams, shouts and whispers. The old and the vulnerable, the frail and the weak, were nowhere to be seen now; the city belonged to the young and the wild.

Alek considered the passersby with thinly-veiled contempt, but he said nothing. Mindful of the presence of the two predators at his rear, he kept his thoughts and his voice to himself, until the Bentley finally came to a rolling stop alongside familiar terrain.

"We are here," he offered. He climbed gracefully from the car and moved to open the passenger door. "Madam Hedley appreciates your time and attentions. A very good evening to you both." He inclined his head to each Kindred in turn and then returned to his vehicle. Its engine, now revived, carried him away into the distance and then out of sight entirely.

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  #61  
Unread 20th of March, 2013, 10:06
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She’d sat bolt upright for the journey, fists clenched onto her lap and eyes staring forwards, face blank. She occasionally glanced through her passenger window for apparently no reason, then returned her gaze forward. When the car stopped her muscles visibly relaxed and she rushed from the vehicle, almost tripping over the kerb in her rush to get out onto the pavement.

“Shoo, shoo, back to your nest!” She hissed disapprovingly at the departing Bentley, waving both her hands at it. She turned and faced Gabriel, and, just for a second appeared surprised as if she had forgotten that he was there with her at all. “Ah yes! Hello, fellow minion of the mighty Jyhad. Where did you park the Chariot?”
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  #62  
Unread 20th of March, 2013, 11:27
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"Just over here," Gabriel said. He reached into his pocket and thumbed the automatic unlock. "Interesting times ahead, wouldn't you say?"

He went over to the passenger side and held open the door for Ize, a slightly far away look in his eye before coming back to the present reality.

"So, shall we explore the scene of the crime, or was there someplace else you wanted to be?"
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  #63  
Unread 20th of March, 2013, 22:29
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She waited for him to get into the Driver’s seat and turned to face him, “I would appreciate the evening to regroup, perhaps some “Eat me, Drink me” before heading down Rebecca’s rabbit-hole in earnest.” She absent-mindedly stroked the side of her hand, grimacing slightly at the touch.

“Although, we should take a look at the crime scene before meeting this Anarch informant… Where is the address? If it’s in the middle of Griffith Park I’m definitely heading home to get my big gun.” She grinned teasingly.
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  #64  
Unread 21st of March, 2013, 21:24
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"Hardly," Gabriel responded. He handed her the card. "So, we still have some time before the night is up. Shall we see the unfortunate locale, then part for a night before tackling this in earnest?"

He turned the ignition in the car and pulled smoothly out, not heading anywhere in particular at the moment.
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  #65  
Unread 22nd of March, 2013, 21:51
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- Private Leonard L. Church, RedvsBlue
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  #66  
Unread 23rd of March, 2013, 01:21
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“Well, I’ve never been to your territory before.” She mused and buckled up, safety first. “And there is a certain wolfish quality to you.” She smirked again and turned on the car radio, needing something to distract her from her mind for the journey.

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  #67  
Unread 28th of March, 2013, 04:15
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Gabriel's car rolled away from the sidewalk, and peeled off into the darkened shadows of the city's outer edge. Distanced from the pumping heart of Los Angeles, the route was far from silent, with the calls, sirens, and other sounds of the centre reverberating after the cruising vehicle.

The residential area was not difficult to find for Gabriel. The location was familiar to him, being close to his domain - but only after following Isabella's direction, quoted from the penned outline provided among Rebecca's documents, did he realise just how close they were to the small family home that he habitually escaped to.

Coming to a rolling stop, the car sat before a small, dual-leveled home that was only slightly larger than the one Gabriel himself inhabited; the windows were blackened and police tape barricaded the main point of entry; the grass on the lawn, cut only recently, lay deadly still, as though it were listening, watching the new arrivals curiously.

The world beyond the residential area ebbed away, the sounds of the city draining from the attentions of the predators. No-one stirred in the houses on either side of the building.

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  #68  
Unread 28th of March, 2013, 12:00
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Gabriel exited the car, making sure both sword and gun were accessible, and waited for Isabella. "Shall we try the back, my dear?" he asked. A bit of breaking and entering was perhaps unavoidable, but best to do it out of sight of curious neighbors.
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  #69  
Unread 30th of March, 2013, 05:33
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Leaving the car she appraised the house before her. She’d imagined somewhere… different to be the scene of this murder, not suburban normalcy. What had the neighbouring houses made of the ghoulish yellow police tape and nocturnal hustle and bustle of the last few days? She zipped up her dark khaki jacket around her and brushed her fingertips reassuringly against the butt of her gun in her jeans and nodded as Gabriel’s suggestion hung in the air.

“Round the back, superman.”

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Unread 31st of March, 2013, 23:58
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Gabriel moved around to the back of the house, his hand resting on his sword. Not because he was worried about being ambushed, but because he didn't want it to bang into anything giving away their presence.

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  #71  
Unread 1st of April, 2013, 19:11
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The coterie vacated Gabriel's car and made for the residence. The grass underfoot was crisp and sharp, suggesting that it was - or had been - well tended. The bushes and sparsely-numbered flowers were, likewise, nursed regularly.

As they moved, their steps purposefully slow and cautious, Isabella allowed the Discipline of Auspex to manifest within her; the world came to life around her: the city's sounds rose in volume as though someone had removed some obtrusive hindrance from her ears; the blades of grass, creases in the police tape, and droplets of condensation upon windowpanes, all revealed themselves in a moment of clarity; and the scent of the neighbouring homes, and their inhabitants, greeted her in a cocktail of smells both pleasant and human.

There was a pause as they reached the backdoor. Glancing around, the two Kindred made certain that they were not being observed from either side - they weren't. Nodding to one another, Gabriel reached forwards, took the door handle firmly between cold, pale fingers, and twisted. The door swung inward soundlessly, revealing a small kitchen, once comfortable, but now lifeless in the dark, stillness of the house. A doorway opposite to the backdoor led further inside, and another room could be glimpsed beyond.

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  #72  
Unread 2nd of April, 2013, 03:56
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At times like this, with her senses blossoming out into the night she felt like the predator she truly was without all the trappings of civility. Like a jaguar skulking in the rainforest Ize became hyper-aware of her surroundings, as unfamiliar as they were. She let the sensations of sight, smell and hearing wash over her, trying to focus in on the back garden and the house. She nodded to her companion and stood behind and slightly to the left of him.

She frowned. “Stop repeating yourself, I heard you the first time.” Her lips formed the words in an almost soundless whisper and she bowed her head, rubbing the bridge of her nose as if trying to soothe a pain away. As Gabriel reached for the door and peered inwards she jerked and looked to the side of her, with an almost disgusted look on her face, seeing nothing but the shadows in the neat flora.

She followed Gabriel into the ghost house, raising her face and sniffing the air. “We’ll need to try and not disturb anything”. Footprints couldn’t be avoided at this point but at least they could avoid leaving any other traces of their presence. She wondered where the Hound had been killed and whether there was anything left to learn after both the police and the sheriff had carried out their investigations. She moved through the kitchen to the room beyond, paying heed to her branched out senses.


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  #73  
Unread 2nd of April, 2013, 11:33
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Gabriel nodded in Ize's general direction. He lacked her supernatural acuity, but was loathe to turn on any lights. His first instinct was to head to the basement though, see if there was anything there. If the Hound was like most of the Kindred, then his lair was most likely down there. It tended to be the easiest to light proof.
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  #74  
Unread 2nd of April, 2013, 19:22
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Breaching the threshold of the house, the Kindred began their investigations. The kitchen was clean and orderly, but Isabella paid it no mind - she moved towards the doorway opposite, her eyes wide and her gaze traversing the walls and surfaces; Gabriel started after her, following his companion in to a rectangular, compressed living room - it, like the kitchen before it, was clean and well-kept.

There were three routes, besides the kitchen one, that led from the living room: the first was a stairway, leading upwards at a generous angle; the second was an open arch that paved the way towards additional rooms; the third was a doorway that, Gabriel could guess, would lead the way down into the basement of the residence.

As both Kindred stepped nearer, a potent aroma met their nostrils: Gabriel, who was already hungry, felt his fangs tip as he picked up on the faintest fragrance of blood; Isabella, whose senses were heightened, could smell it in full. There was so much of it, or had been: it was old, but still strong, and it was coming from the stairway.

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  #75  
Unread 3rd of April, 2013, 21:23
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"Hey Ize," Gabriel cautioned. "You might want to tone it down. I think I found a light switch here," he said. He waited for an acknowledgment from his companion before flipping the switch down to the basement. If this had been a Kindred haven, odds were good that it was blacked out, which meant no light would be escaping either.
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