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Knock on Wood, Season 1, Episode 1 - "The Crooked Lady of Cookeville, TN"

ZombWie

Hircus Hornbrow
It's about two am and the road is empty. Two men sit quietly in the cab of a tractor-trailer booking down Kansas State Route 9, just outside of Cawker City, KS. Big Joe is driving and Bert is looking distracted as he watches the white lines through the passenger window. Big Joe is about six and a half feet tall, tanned and the biceps of a WWF wrestler. It is clear that he spends a large amount of time in the weight room. Bert is the exact inverse of the giant trucker. Bert wears a white t-shirt customized with a glitter Q-Bert iron on. He clutches a Canon AE-1 with a 50mm f/1.8 lens as if he is ready to take a photo at any moment. Around Bert's waist is a blue fanny pack stuffed with film and various other essentials. Bert is five foot 6 in shoes and maybe a buck thirty soaking wet. His crazy brown curly hair is so overbrushed that it stands out from his head like a cheerleaders pom-pom. Big Joe reaches out to turn on the radio and Bert flinches. "Hey Bert, I'm not gonna hit'chya. I'm just putting some music on. Jeez!"

Big Joe turns the station a few times looking for something good, but all he can get is static and talk radio. He decides to leave the talk radio play if for no other reason, but to fill the silence. Both hands back on the wheel he sits up straight and shakes the sleep out by whipping his head back and forth. Bert eyes the driver with annoyance then turns back around to look out the window once more.

"... been a few weeks since we've had any real good ghost stories from you all. Why don't you give me a call? 1-800-SHORE-AM Welcome to the show caller, what's your name? (pause) Oh, well! I guess we won't be getting any good stories from that gal. Next on the line, Who is this we are talking to?"

"Hi! Is this Mel? Mel Bart? OMG! Mel! They put me through (unintelligible mumbles) ...name is Honeydew"

"Ha ha! This is me. Honeydew, what a great name. Honey, what truths have you called in to share this evening?"

"Oh! Uh, I'm just so... OH! OK, so, I am calling from Paradise, Kansas. Have you heard what happened here in Paradise?"

"Can't say that anything rings a bell. What happened?"

"Oh! So, I am working here at the End of the Rainbow Diner and we nearly got robbed, but didn't and um, so that's nothing, so there was this thing at the ACME? So, supposedly there was a plague of locusts and a bunch of people got killed, like dead, and the Sheriff was killed too!"

"A plague of locusts you say, wow. So biblical. Go on."

"Yeah, so apparently-"

Bert reaches out and turns the knob to silence the radio. "That's enough of that shit. Hey, Joe, We're here..."

The big rig slows down and maneuvers into a parking lot next to a lit up sign clearly meant to flag down tourists. In big bold letters it reads "World's Largest Ball of Twine". As they pull in the sign lights flip off. Big Joe turns around the side of the main building and heads to the back where a van and a Winnebago sit parked under a single streetlight. Bert jumps out of the rig and shuts the door without a single word spoken to Big Joe. Big Joe reaches over with an enormous arm and rolls down the passenger window and yells. "Bert! Come on dude. I didn't mean any offense by it man. I just wanted to see if I could get you to part with it for a few days. Come on man!" Bert waves one hand in the air without looking back. A few seconds later the rig turns around and heads back out of the lot. Kicking up stones as it merges onto the highway once more.

Walking up to the RV Bert can see that it is loaded with a few people and can hear a conversation from inside. Before he can get within ten feet the side door swings open and Lolli pokes her head out. "Herbert Gosh Darn Berger, how you been? I feel like pinching your cheeks, but that look on your face makes me think you might bite. Come on in. I'll make the introductions."

Bert Stands flat-footed outside the door peering in, his hand tightly gripping the camera strap over his shoulder. "Did you get them all? All five of them? ...alive this time?"
 
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Marrok sits in the bench seat of Lolli's R.V., he had been quiet the whole ride, even when Erin had put aloe and bandages on his burned forearms. He had been trying to think of how to process the events of the past few hours when he finally spoke up. "Who sent you to find a bunch of kids, Lolli?"

Lolli sits down on her Captains' chair and digs around in her purse for something. She wrinkles up her face and looks Marrok in the eye. "I thought you were paying attention back at the diner." SHe pulls out a newspaper and tosses it onto the table that you are all sitting around. She looks disappointed at your question. "Nothing sent me to find you. I found your names in the paper. My system is based on doodling until things start to surface and make sense to me. I can't really explain it. You will have to find your own system pup."

Marrok hadn't forgotten what she had said in the diner, it was all he had been thinking about aside from fighting a monster made of tar and bugs and the immense pain he felt all over his arms. He didn't push the issue, though he was certain that his new traveling companions would have a few questions of their own for the old lady who swept in and changed their lives in seconds.

He didn't have much knowledge of the supernatural, with the obvious exception of werewolves, but he didn't think that her finding a group of people that he had met in random places across the country was a coincidence. Someone or something had to be pulling the strings around here, even if Lolli didn't beleive it.

He growled quietly and sulked a bit when the old lady called him "pup." He wasn't really fond of cute pet names, but he had a feeling it was going to stick with the old gal. He looked up at the new arrival and saw his camera. He immediately got suspicious of the man who obviously had worked with Lolli before.
 
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heylookitsme

I SEE YOU
Slightly more interested in that shiny-looking, seemingly state-of-the art camera than figuring out the conspiracy wrapping around her, Selene wasn't thinking much about unanswered questions, but once she heard that her name was written in some kind of publication, she snapped to attention a bit. "But wait, how did it find us? How did it find me? I'm not exactly terribly easy to find. Most people living in New Mexico couldn't tell you where Dexter was, even if you gave them a map." Looking at the pile of newspapers that she seemed to be able to be found in, she remarks "we don't even have a newspaper!"

Lolli stands and moves to the table unfolding the newspaper. It's a hodgepodge of maybe, a dozen different papers from around the country. She points to an ad for shampoo, a coupon for 1/2 off ground beef and an obituary. "That's not going to be real helpful to you, my dear. I can't rightly say what it is that makes the text stand out for me, it just... does." She pushes up her huge glasses and continues, "I didn't get your name exactly from any one place. It's more like a infinitely complex Ouija Board, except not from the devil."

Selene nods, then stops at her last statement, "but wait, Ouijia board messages are from the devil? Like, Satan? The fallen one?"
Lolli nods.
That's... Substantial...
 

Moonpenny

New Member
Erin heads up quietly, having changed from her bug-guts-encrusted outfit into a crumpled, yet clean, summery dress. Her coppery hair was combed, muck cleaned off her legs, and she traded in her sneakers for a pair of old children's ballet flats. Being tiny mostly sucked, but at least it made for good clothes shopping if you're into "cute".

"Hey, Lolli? Uh, I was listening to them... the team, I guess? and they were talking about how there will end up being five of them. I had a question if you don't mind... do you know who the next one is? Or two, if I don't count?"

Erin fidgets a bit, nervous being in a caravan full of, apparently, comic-book style superheroes sans capes. Or maybe fantasy heroes? She absently touches a lock of the werewolf's hair, hoping he doesn't notice. Is Marrok a noble lycanthrope paladin, perhaps? Maybe a monk...

Selene adds in, "You're definitely much more of a member than I am, Erin, I must be the mistake."

Erin glances to the pondering Lolli and replies, "You're smarter than me, at least, and every group needs its brainy types."

"You have literal superpowers. Reading a lot of books as a kid and being able to shoryuken people from a distance is not the same."

Erin laughs quietly, "Yeah, I can shoot a punch that doesn't hurt the other guy but knocks me on my butt. That's useful."

She didn't consider her entry into the world of superhuman exploits terribly glorious. Sure, she managed a feat of magic, but she suspected it was mostly because people ignored it and never tried... Erin didn't put a whole lot of effort into her first spell and yet it worked, so surely others have tried it too, given the abundance of cheap pulp magic books in circulation.

"The only punch I can throw is the one in a cup. You're infinitely better at fighting than I am. Well, not really, because infinity times zero is zero, but you understand," Selene responds.

Erik adds, "I think you're devaluing the part where you have literal magic powers. How does that even happen?! But this is my first time in the RV."

Erin shakes her head to Erik. "Later," she mouths, noticing Lolli standing up finally.

Lolli walks over to Marrok and throws her thumb over her shoulder and says, "Move it you big shag carpet. Let an old lady sit for a bit while we talk through this."

She takes the seat formerly occupied by Marrok and grabs Erin's hands in hers. "Sometimes fate gives us what we want, sometimes what we need, but this time fate is handing you the keys. I know that sounds bonkers and you are probably thing I am some crackpot old lady so full shit her eyes are brown. Well, jeepers creepers these peepers are blue!"


Erin looked down at Lolli's hands. She hasn't been too much of a fan of Fate so far, but maybe it's time for things to turn around for her?

Lolli lets go of Erin's hands and gives a quick glance toward Bert who stands still and awkward in the corner of the crowded RV. Bert shakes his head back and forth.

Lolli looks back at Erin with a pool of tears ready to spill out over her crepe paper skin.

"Erin, You were number five, Selene is four, Erik is three, Marrok is two..." Lolli takes sighs and looks away, then back again.

"Number one didn't make it out of Paradise. She... She didn't..."

She wiped away the first of the spilled tears, "Sarah didn't make it to the RV in time and she was killed in a barn not 100ft from the End of the Rainbow Diner. I had to keep it together, I had to get you all in my RV or none of us were going to make it out."


"...we could've had another of us? Oh man, Lolli, I'm … I'm sorry!" Erin blurts, hugging the older lady with no concern for decorum or personal space.

Lolli just returned the hug and let out a quiet sob at the loss.
 

ramonlimon2

Junior Member
"Point of order, this is actually my first time in the RV," Erik says, unmoved at the supposed loss of a team member. "Now. Can you use that mystical hoo doo shit to tell me what actually happened in Paradise, and, more importantly, if we can expect it to happen again? I've seen grasshoppers before, and I've read about locusts. Whatever they do, that's not it. That was some biblical plague level shit! I shot the thing point blank and all it did was draw the thing's attention!"

Lolli stands up straight and crosses her arms. "Erik James Clairborne, no need to use that tone with me! You were there, not me." Lolli relaxes a bit and softens her tone, "Sugar, I'm not the all powerful Zoltar! I can't jus tell you the secrets of the Universe. As far as I can tell that was a negative manifestation of a local bad luck case caused by the absence of a release of positive kismet into the great all in all... or maybe a Golem or some kind. I don't know anymore than you do."

"We're going to need to write an encyclopedia to keep track of all this," Selene sighs.

Scowling, Erik grabs a slip of paper and a marker. In big block letters, he writes LOLLI = NOT ALL POWERFUL ZOLTAR. "There's entry one for you, apparently the only piece of information we have."

Selene takes the paper, and under Erik's words she writes can not make us big. "Thank youuu," she says, "I quite hope this isn't what my book ends up becoming, but maybe it'll be where I make all my mistakes. My sophomore book will be the good one. Names may need to be changed to protect the innocent."
 

ZombWie

Hircus Hornbrow
"Look, kids," says Lolli as she sits down. "I realize that you probably have a million questions, but the answers just aren't there. There really are things in this world that you need to live to understand. I wasn't exaggerating when I said that you have the keys to your fate right now. Luck is riding with you in this RV and it's as real as the monster you defeated back at the ACME. Winnie and I will help guide you, but this is your road to navigate." Lolli stands up and grabs her big purse, rummages around inside, then pulls out a rabbit's foot. "This is my charm. My grandson Jake gave it to me as a gift on grandparent's day at his elementary school." The small blue rabbit's foot is crimped onto a metal beaded chain my a gold colored cap. "If I lose it, well, I am out of this game. I will explain more about that later. First of all, let's talk about Luck"

“You know that feeling you get the moment you realize that something really amazing just happened? That tingling swirling in your chest when you find out you won a hundred bucks or found a lost keepsake or met a person that will change your life forever? Right at that moment, you are channeling a little bit of the Universe. A little bit of luck is seeping through you and redirecting your life in a positive way. That feeling is not so different from the opposite experience of losing something valuable or someone important to you. Fate can take things from you in just the same damn way. This is the order of things! We win some, we lose some.” She relaxes a bit back into her captain’s chair as if she is reminiscing about something. Catching herself drifting off she sits upright and continues with renewed energy. “This trickle of the universe that passes through your space and makes you feel good can also move the other way as bad things happen. When your dog chews up your favorite cassette or your boyfriend cheats or you realize you ate bad shrimp! These things cause luck to travel through you in the opposite direction. It’s a balancing system of sorts. We are fate’s pressure valves. When we experience the good we become positively charged which makes us more likely to suck up the bad when it comes around. That is our function as we pilot these flesh bags around this rock. We keep the universe level.”

Lolli stands and walks to the back of the RV and opens the closet. "I have more bad news kids. I know we just met, but I have to go a different road for a little while. That is why Bert is here. Bert and I are pen pals of a sort. He can guide you to the next manifestation, but it will be up to you to figure out what to do from there." Lolli takes a pink sweater covered in fluffy birds and shrugs it over her shoulders. "Don't ever get old. You feel a goddamn chill no matter what time of year it is." Lolli shivers and knocks on the door frame as she walks into the bedroom, "Goodnight." and she closes the door.

Bert speaks up for the first time. "Um, OK! Let's get rolling, shall we? Erik, you're driving. Uh, is that cool? I mean, I assume it is. Uh, OK? Let's go." he says as he makes an odd gesture like he is directing a plane on a runway. "Next stop, uh, Tennesee!"
 

ZombWie

Hircus Hornbrow
It's around 8 pm as you pull into Cookeville, TN. The sun is setting. The town is quiet and the van is rolling to a stop on fumes. Everyone piles out of the van, stretching and cracking their sore body parts. Bert is the last one out. He seems surprisingly spry after spending all night and all day in a crowded van. "Alright, uh, gang. I need to make some cash." He pulls a small spiral notebook from his fanny pack and flips it open. "It, uh, looks like you will be staying at the Hilton." He pauses a second and the looks up with a smile, "Psych! You all will be staying at, uh, Lolli's friend's house. Her name is Wenda, uh, lives in the big white place on, uh, Sherbert street? Uh, oh, duh, no, ha! Herbert street. Uh, how did I get that wrong? Man, what a spaz! Uh, she, uh, has plenty of beds for you all to rest the night. Uh, ok, so, I will see you when you wrap up. Uh, kay, bye!", and Bert walks of loading film into his camera and winding it forward to the first frame.
 
Marrok growled quietly as Bert walked off. Thanks a lot, Bert. Marrok found himself standing in the middle of this small town with three people who now knew his secret, and that scared him more than any monster. He looked around at the three other equally confused faces and decided to break the short silence by asking "Ok, so we are here to figure out something that's going on? Something like the bug situation, I guess. Does anyone have any clue where the fuck to start?" He mostly directed his question toward Selene, though he would welcome anyone's input.

He sniffed quietly, trying to see if he sensed anything out of place, and he was drawn to the street leading out of the town's center. He would make note of that, but he wanted to see where his new "friends" thought they should head first.
 

Moonpenny

New Member
Erin sat in the front seat of the still-running van, listening to Jefferson Starship while the group decided what they were going to do.

“Marconi plays the mamba, listen to the radio! Don’t you remember…? We built this city… We built this city on rock and roll…”

The cassette player hit the end of side "A" and click-click-clicked, then begun playing side "B".

“Go now, don’t look back, we’ve drawn the line.
Move on, it’s no good to go back in time.
I’ll never find another girl like you, for happy endings it takes two.
We’re fire and ice, a dream won’t come true.
Sara. Sara, Storms are brewing-“

Erin winced and hit eject.

"So, um, why don't we just take what we know of the address and go ask at the post office? They usually have a bit map showing who's assigned to what route, maybe they can help us find the house."
 

ramonlimon2

Junior Member
"Before we do anything else, we need to find a gas station," Erik says. He taps on the dashboard. "I'm running on fumes here, got maybe a mile left in the tank."

"After that, post office seems like a good idea. Better than just driving around until we find it."
 

heylookitsme

I SEE YOU
Selene's having a fine time starting her encyclopedia. Table of contents could possibly continue infinitely, but currently, she has scattered rough notes on locustman swarms and the goop that holds them together, the foundational concepts of the world up 'til now and the new concepts picked up recently, along with new vocabulary words,
When the van stops and Bert leaves the group, she shouts at him "YOU KNOW, WITH A NON-MECHANIZED CAMERA, IF YOU LOAD YOUR FILM IN A DARKROOM, YOU'D GET ONE EXTRA PHOTO." He continues on his way, raising one arm as though to say, "yeah, sure, I don't care, goodbye."

With the slightest hint of a frown, she says "You know, I thought I would like Ernie more than I actually did in the end."
"Bert."
"Who's 'Burt?' "
"Him. His name was Bert, not Ernie."
"Oh. Ohhh. I can see why I made that mistake. Anyways, I could have liked him better," speech becoming more of a sigh as she finished her sentence. Then right on back to assembling notes until more plans about their new future get organized and decided.
 

Moonpenny

New Member
After sitting in silence pondering, Selene speaks up "I... Have money. A considerable amount. I don't spend much, and have the majority of the money I've earned throughout my life saved. I've been very careful spending it while travelling, haven't been mugged, and have only spent when necessary, I'm very thrifty. And, seeing as we're all a big team now and seem to be headed in he same directions, on the same transports. I'm willing to use my money to fund us to pay for anything we might need, as long as I get it returned to me in full at some point."

"Lolli said that Bert would lead us to this new 'manifestation.' What do you think this one will be? I'm thinking... The local plants have become overgrown and sapient."

Marrok states, "As long as it's not made of goo this time, I'll be happy."

"What if it's made of fire?" asks Selene

Erin adds, "Could just be different bugs. Flies this time, for instance."

"ooh, I was just about to say 'jelly-monster' and that gave me an idea of how we'd fix that fly problem easily, thanks for the inspiration, Erin," the other girl adds.

"I'd prefer jelly monster if it'd be like, grape or strawberry. My luck, though, and we'd end up in The Blob."

"I wouldn't mind peach, myself."

After a few moments of deliberation, Selene also states, "Mmmm.... I wonder if there are any farmers markets around here. I wouldn't mind picking up a jar of preserves."

Erin snorts, "Peach cobbler demons."

"Don't worry, I always carry a spoon with me. Oh wait, I might need to get exorcised afterwards. If it speaks Latin backwards, don't eat it or invite it into your body."

Erin grins at Selene, "Are you sure you're not thinking of incubi?"

"Hmmmm... Maybe so. My mythology could use some brushing up, now that you think about it. I read The Iliad once when I was 12 and it put off my appetite for myths for a decent amount of time."

Marrok is just staring at both of you as you continue to ramble on with a confused look on his face. He leans over to Erik and ask, "Admittedly, I haven't been around them for a while, but do gals usually talk this much?"


Erin opens her backpack and pulls out a slender hardbound book, its spine covered in packing tape.

Selene whispers to Erin, "Looks like Marrok doesn't know much about what the kind of creatures he might be lumped in with, to the everyday layman."

"Here we go, the Monster Manual."

Selene looks momentarily confused.

Erin flips the book open and navigates to the correct page, hands it to Selene, "As weird as it's going to sound, this is how I got my powers... sort-of. I learn them from books like this."

"Oooh, I'd love to see how your abilities lit up! Maybe I'll pick up some of it too."

Erin then pulls out another one, a smaller dog-eared paperback called, "Opening the Third Eye".

"This is the first book that I read, actually. I don't understand why more people don't read them, since they obviously work?"

"Hit Dice... Treasure type... chaotic evil... psionic ability..." Selene looks confused at the contents of the book.

"Monster Manual? What's that?" Marrok tries to look over Selene's shoulder.

"I love the illustrations in this book, but I may need some sort of refrence guide for what half of this means."


Erin leans back against Marrok, "Just showing Selene how I got my magic."

"This other one, on the other hand, I'd love to borrow from you, it looks supremely interesting!"

Erin places the paperback into Selene's lap, "I could probably quote the whole thing by memory, take your time."

"I got my 'magic' by being brutally mauled by some asshole outside my high school," Marrok states. Erin winces, but says nothing.

"I'll see what I can pick up, thank you very much," Selene says, then begins to read feverishly starting from page 1.


Erin sets the role playing books down, "Hey Marrok? Did I ever show you guys the other power?"

Suddenly Marrok is very interested. His eyes widen. "You can do more, that's amazing. What can you do?"

Selene claps excitedly, hoping for a display.

Erin looks around the parking lot and finds a large-ish pebble, "This'll work." She then throws it with all her strength and it hits something in mid-air about fifteen feet away, where it stops and drops to the ground.

"Invisible walls. You can break it down, but I bet it'd stop a bullet."

Once again, Selene looks baffled at an example of something that oughtn't to exist and almost claps.

"I mean, if nothing else you could do a REALLY good job as a mime," Erin adds.

Marrok walks over and pushes on it a few times. "Huh?!" He steps back and tackles the wall with his shoulder.

Erin turns to Selene, "Thing is, like in the comics and stuff, doing this eventually wears them out, right? I don't even get the nosebleed like good psychics do... I think I got gypped."

Erin ponders, "I should try doubling them up sometime, now that I think about it."

Marrok hits the invisible wall hard and falls on his ass.

Erin glances over, hops up concernedly and rushes over to Marrok, "Oh, hey, sorry, are you okay?"

Selene finally snaps out of having her world rocked again, somehing seemingly made out of nothing, "Oh, um. A nosebleed due to mental strain may indicate you are not long for this world. Can you be sure the blood isn't being drained into your lungs?" She doesn't take her eyes off where the wall would be.

Erin kneels next to the werewolf and worries over him briefly.

Marrok exclaims, "Wow, that shit is strong!"

The werewolf looks up at Erin and smiles.

"Don't worry about me, I'm fine." He says as he pulls himself up.


Erin nods, stands up next to him and blushes, "Of course you are, right." She turns around and goes to sit next to Selene again, palm against her face.

"If the walls were directly next to each other, the forces would travel uniformly through both walls, as in a Newton's cradle. A better strategy would be to put a few inches to feet of space between them."

When Erin turns away, Marrok rubs his shoulder and swears under his breath, then stops when she glances briefly back at him.

"S-so, did you want to try, Selene? I mean, I figure you'd like to experiment or something on it?"

Selene responds, "On the walls themselves? Or trying my hand at summoning the same effect?"

"Uh, either, I guess?"

"Well, I'm not sure I've read enough to perform these sorts of feats safely, I'm only 5 pages in, but I'll give it a try later. Stress tests, would be a very good idea, however."

Erin nods, "Oh, there's this, too."

Erin sits down in front of Selene and folds her legs under her, apparently sitting on a very low invisible wall as a seat.

Marrok asks, "Can you magic punch your own magic wall?"

"Yeah, but wouldn't it be easier to just make my own wall vanish?"

"I think that's an experiment worth running, though. Which is stronger, and is it consistent. What's the most you can manifest at once? Not to push you past your limits, though, of course."

"But would it be as fun?"

"It's not a power thing I don't think, it's a concentration thing... the one under me I'm aware of, so it'd say even if I fell asleep. The one standing in the lot lasts as long as I remember it's there, then it vanishes. The more I have, the harder it is to concentrate on all of them at once. I've never had one vanish just from … expiring, I guess?"

"Hmmm... I'd like to find out the exact physics between what these walls are, but that may need to wait for another day."
Erin ponders, "More than three or four and I lose track and they start vanishing as soon as I make one."


Erin hms, points at the wall, "Magic Missile."

The force missile fires out, strikes the wall, and they both vanish in a flash of bright light.

"Huh, now we know, I guess."

Marrok holds back clapping, but has a big smile on his face. "Radical."

Selene's face lights up like a welder without a hood, gears in her head visibly turning with the possibilities.
 
Marrok notices that the smell is starting to bother him. Is that blood? Oh, no!

He takes off toward the smell. His mind is completely preoccupied with saving whoever needs help, so much so, he forgets about his new friends for a moment. He reaches an ally and notices the bloody shirt, and the small trail of blood that he is certain he could follow. Erin jogs up behind him, and he suddenly snaps back to his senses.

"There's a bloody shirt. It looks like someone is bleeding pretty bad, and they are heading that way," he points in the direction that the blood trail goes.
 

Moonpenny

New Member
Erin gasps out, "I'm following you, hon" to Marrok as she recovers. She really needs to get more exercise.
 

ramonlimon2

Junior Member
Exhausted after nearly 15 hours of driving, Erik thankfully pulls into the first open space he finds. Unfortunately in his tired state he misses the sign posted NO PARKING HERE TO CORNER. Cookeville being a university town, a cop appears as if out of nowhere to write him a ticket.

He sighs for a second, then winks at Selene. "Watch this," he smirks.

As the officer approaches his window, he cuts her off with a tired smile. "Sorry, Officer, I didn't see the sign there until I parked. We've been driving non-stop since Kansas, and I just pulled into the first space I saw for a chance to stretch my legs and walk around for a bit. We'll move right along."

The cop pauses, caught just before she began to speak, and glances over the vehicle and its passengers, considering. Erik takes the second to surreptitiously glance at her name plate.

"Actually, Officer Sizemore, since you're here I've got a question. We're only passing through for the day, but if you would point us to some points of interest I'd much appreciate it."

Officer Jane Sizemore tells them about the memorial to Dammit the Dog which Erik parked near, as well as a great little hole in the wall restaurant, the library, and some other local offerings. Encouraged by their interest and affability, she lets VAN CREW know where she'll be patrolling for the day if they have any further questions. By the time she leaves, she has apparently decided against writing the ticket, or forgotten about it altogether.

As Erik gets out of the driver's seat, he smiles at Selene. "And that's how you do that."
 
Marrok and Erin follow the blood trail. They are lead out of the alley until they see a shirtless man walking around a corner into a new alley. Marrok slowly looks around the corner and finds that the bleeding man appears to be gone.

Erin looks around and finds a few blood stains, indicating that the man went inside a door nearby. She concentrated and used her "arcane eye" spell to view inside the door. She saw an older gentleman holding a mop, and not much else.

"Huh, something is very odd here," Marrok observes.
 
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Moonpenny

New Member
Flashback to two days earlier, St. Louis:

A flickering neon "Vacancy" sign lights the curtains in a way the dim yellow sulfur street lights refuse to do. In the distance, sterile blue-light lamps illuminate the Saint Louis Arch. Distant police sirens compete with dog barks and the occasional crack of ammunition, fireworks, or breaking glass to add to the feeling of a neighborhood on decline in a period of overall wealth.

Erin knocks briefly, then wrestles with a large bag of necessary supplies and a six pack of Tab while trying to unlock the motel door.

Selene peeks through the hole, with one of those very big, creaky pinhole covers, "Oh, hi Erin!"
She pulls the door open, "Need any help with that?" I could definitely handle the sodapops."


"Oh, hey! Thanks, I just had to get a snack or two, you know?"
Erin sets down a box of smurfberry crunch, packages of oreos, various other junk foods.

Selene says under her breath "I thought smurfberry only existed in the universe of the smurfs."

"So, y'know, I thought of something I that occurred to me when we were first introduced?"

"Yes?" Selene inquires.

Erin answers, "When I was a kid, mom told me her best friends when she was pregnant had a kid with the same name as you... she apparently liked it so much she was going to name me 'Serenity' so they'd be similar-ish, but she shortened it to Erin."

Erin tugs at a stray lock, "Could be because of my obvious Irishness, too, maybe."

"Anyway, not a huge thing, just thought if I took a superhero name I could go back to using Serenity, that way we could be a team... Selene and Serenity, fighting ...uh, demons or whatever?" Erin continues.

"Hmm. That's an interesting concidence. And that the two of us would be assembled to try and save the world would definitely be a sort of serendipity. But I like it. Whatever you like using best."

After a beat Selene adds with a small giggle, "Although, in the heat of apocalypse, it might be faster to call you Erin."


Erin sticks the Tabs in the room mini-fridge, puts two in the freezer, "Don't let me forget those are in there please?"

"Sure, I've seen the aftermath of frozen cans. Expanding gas and expanding liquid in a container that thin is a bit of an easy way to improvised weaponry."

"... what gets hurt by frozen soda?"

"there's a joke in there, let me think it over."

Erin puts a bag of miniature Reese's cups in the freezer also and waits for Selene's joke.

"but... hot soup that's alive...ummmm..."

Erin grins, "Oh, maybe like that peach cobbler golem?"

"The sun, if you had a practically infinite amount of frozen soda. Hmmm... Yes, actually. The soda, once melted would wash it awayand if hot, the shock of jumping from one extreme, temperature-wise, could cause it to develop structural integrity issues. Like putting a glass baking dish hot out of the oven into the freezer."

Erin just stares at Selene for a moment, confused as to if she's talking about the peach cobbler golem or putting out the sun with pop, "Um, but, where would you get that much soda?"

"A firetruck. With only soda inside."

Ah, she was talking about the peach cobbler golem.

"Or a firetruck made entirely of soda. I mean, if you threw a can of frozen soda at someone's head, you could kill anyone, really."

Erin notes the clear space where she previously had her bag laying haphazardly, "Oh, if you were doing your yoga, you could tell me... I'm totally willing to make room for you, by the way. Also, I don't think I'd chuck frozen sodas at people... that's mean."

"No, that's fine, I can stretch anywhere, as long as I'm in a cube with sides of my body length."

Changing her response to chucking frozen sodas at people, "At regular people, sure, but what if they were going to eat you? Because they were really...actually, no, sorry, I've been reading a lot of pulp lately, my imagination is out of control recently."


"Well, lately it seems that that's not too far of a stretch, cannibals and all? What with what we've already seen."

"Maybe not, but...Have you thought recently that this is all a big dream? Some kind of nightmare you can't wake up from? Well, I mean, I'd be the only one to confirm this, solipsism and all that. But it's a bit... dreamy, isn't it?"

Erin nods, "Well, once in a while weird things happen that rational me thinks shouldn't be able to happen in real life... I mean, like if I really was a comic book character or one of Jeremy's role playing characters or even like, bad fiction or something."

Selene continues, "I'm travelling across the country, wind at my back, and then next thing I know, I'm being drated into some kind of secret group of doomsday preventers and... it all sound so crazy."

Erin opens the box of Smurfberry Crunch and sets it in midair in front of Selene after taking a handful.

Selene eyes the box, making as little contact with the cereal as possible while pouring it into her hands, because germs. Gross.

"Sure, I've always been curious what Gargamel was after." She eats her handful of obviously artificially colored and flavored sugar.


"After what we've seen, I think a sense of reality only is so useful," Erin notes.

"Hmmm. Awfully like Kix. But with sharp fruit flavors."


"Yep, so in this case it's kid tested, mother rejected, purchased by dad behind mom's back, I'm sure."

"I never had much sugar growing up. Most I had would probably be in... I can't remember glucose content by fruit right now, but maybe grapes. By volume? Definitely raisins"

Erin smirks, "In twenty years they'll find out that this stuff is full of like, uranium or something and that's why it's so colorful, and then we're growing extra arms and stuff."

Erin eyes her remaining smurfberries, "Probably going to wake up with fingers growing out of my forehead after this." She eats them anyway.

"Actually... let me seee..." and Selene begins digging through her purse, ultimately pulling out a small box with a keychain on it and flips a switch.

The box chimes in with its opinion of the smurfberries: "grttrtttrtttt rtttrttgrttrt." Astute, that.

Erin blinks, "Geiger counter?"

Responding apparently to the box, Selene notes,"No, no above average average radiation here."

In response to her roommate, "Why yes, it is."

Erin blinks again, "You keep a Geiger counter in your purse?"

"I heard they were making small keychain versions while I was working in the Dexter Police Station. Of course, you never know when your ceramics might actually have uranium in them."

"Huh, had no idea you had that... you've got more toys in there than my brother had in his room."

"They mostly used them to try and find out whether or not the Soviets were trying to leave behind small bits of plutonium in our fields. Odd mob mentality you get in small towns"

Erin goes over to her bed and digs through her backpack, pulls out a long white and grey striped t-shirt.

Selene realizes what Erin said, responds with a friendly slap and "And I do nooot."


"Why would the Soviets put plutonium in the fields? Isn't that like, expensive?"

"I only have this, and this bag of potpurri, dice, loaded and unloaded, lighter, multitool, and a few other things. That's what I would say in my head. Because of course, you don't want to be labelled as a sympathizer, I learned my lesson from McCarthy."


Erin pulls her dress off over her head and tosses it on the pile of clothes on the bed, then digs around in the backpack, "I've got dice, but they're really weird."

She then tosses a small Crown Royal bag to Selene, "One of these days I'll have to actually read the books and figure this crap out."

Selene replies, "but, 'tell you hwat, Jer'miah, them gotdanged commies is puttin' radio-ac-tive iso-topes in my fields, 'at's why I cain't grow no danged sorghum this year.' "

Erin looks surprised at the sudden lack of British accent from Selene's mouth as she imitates what she assumes American farmers sounds like. She slips the t-shirt on over her head.

"Well, If you happen to have the books with you, I'd love to help you figure it out!" Selene offers,
"Any game with this many dice has to be at least relatively exciting."


Erin looks askew at Selene, "So, uh, hey... what is sorghum, anyway? Also, I've got something else I'd kinda hope you'd be willing to teach me."

Erin grips the hem of the shirt, "Y'know, if you're willing?"
 

ZombWie

Hircus Hornbrow
Officer Sizemore walks back to her cruiser with a smile on her face. Taking her hat off and ducking into the driver's seat, she glances at the time.

Not even 9 pm and I've already done real police business. This cop gig is going to work out pretty well despite the protests of Mom and Dad.

Jane chuckles to herself. "And I didn't even get shot by those folks in the van!" She says to herself as she sits her hat on the seat beside her. Jane puts the Crown Vic in gear and pulls out into the nonexistent traffic of Cookeville's main drag. This is Officer Sizemore's very first shift on patrol. She has been busting her ass trying to prove to the Chief that she wasn't meant for the desk he sat her in on her first day. Jane always dreamed of being an honest to God peacekeeping officer of the law. As she drives down Main Street she scans the streets for anything unusual, but Cookeville is not looking to make her first night of patrol very interesting or maybe she was wrong. A block away there is a man in jeans wearing no shirt. He looks over his shoulder and ducks down an alley. Then from across the street two individuals step out into the road and seem to chase the shirtless man down the alley. She slows the cruiser and turns down the side street passing the alley to get a look at the scene. Peering down the alley as she passes it looks like the shirtless man is gone, but the other two are messing around at the service entrance to The White Lady Hotel. Jane parks the cruiser just past the alley and gets out.

"Hey! What business do you have back here and where's the the man you were following?" Says Officer Sizemore as she approaches the man and woman in the alley.

Shit! I forgot to radio in that I was getting out to investigate these folks.
 
"Uh...uh... we just came back into the alley to make out, right, um... honey," Marrok says through slightly gritted teeth, trying to signal Erin to do something. "We thought this would be a nice, out of the way spot to spend some time together, but then we found, uh... this trail... this trail of blood here." He points down at the small droplets on the ground. "Um... I didn't do it, right... um... baby?" he is sweating now. Him liking Erin didn't help him to keep his cool.

As he rambled on about how he didn't hurt anyone, the cop began to look more and more disturbed. Eventually, she had enough of his bull shit and she stepped forward, raising her gun in his direction. "Careful, don't trip on that!" Erin shouted at the cop as she willed a short invisible wall into existance at her feet. The cop looked down, but tripped over nothing anyway. As she tumbled forward, her finger slipped onto the trigger and the gun went off right in Marrok's face.

I'm dead. This is what being dead is like. Holy shit my ears hurt. Wait.

Marrok opens his eyes to see the officer on the ground, and Erin screaming in his direction. He can't make out what she said at first, his ears are ringing, but soon he can make out, "She's shooting at us!"

"We are in deep shit, lets bolt!" he lifts Erin up, and as he prepares to jump over the downed police officer, he hears a door open behind him.

"Oh, hey! There you are."
 
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heylookitsme

I SEE YOU
Erin looks askew at Selene, "So, uh, hey... what is sorghum, anyway? Also, I've got something else I'd kinda hope you'd be willing to teach me."

Erin grips the hem of the shirt, "Y'know, if you're willing?"

"It's a type of cereal, in the agricultural sense, used to make sweeteners and fed to livestock, sometimes for alcohol production. But sure, I'd love to, if I can."

Erin nods, "Well, one of the books I was reading mentioned that yoga was good for developing your internal power, I figured maybe it'd help me do better with my powers?" She sits on air, clearly trying to practice concentrating on a number of walls at once.

Selene adds, "Sure, I could definitely help teach you the basics, at least. Although...are you sure by internal power, that they didn't mean 'core strength?' I wouldn't want you to get your hopes up only to run into walls with your abilities over a mistranslation," clearly worried about setting her up to be disappointed.

Erin shrugs, "It was in a book on magic, they said the yogis could levitate and live to be 200 and stuff." She continues, "I didn't know he did any more than steal picnic baskets."

Selene's relatively serious expression breaks into a solid two and a half minutes of laughter.

Erin grins, "So, I think I'm already pretty flexible, I did dance as a kid, and all, but mom didn't try teaching me any yoga despite practicing, herself. Tap, ballet, lots of tumbling and gymnastics." Then, after a moment shrugs and says, "Well, honestly, I didn't ask at the time either."

"I can definitely pick you up a book on intermediate yoga, next time we've had time to plant out roots... and maybe you couldn't ask then, but you can ask now!"

Selene grins, stands up, and makes a dramatic pose, extending a hand and looking upwards, asks, "SO! ERIN..." pausing, when she realizes she either doesn't know or remember Erin's last name, "What's your last name again?"

Erin winces, "Not, I mean...I can't ask her now, actually. And, it's Rose."

She wilts, dropping her arm and realizing that she'd stepped on some kind of landmine, "Oh. I'm sorry if I touched on something personal there... I meant asking me..."

Erin shakes her head, "It's been a couple years. My Aunt took me in until I was 18, and she didn't really focus on anything other than her own grief, so I was left on my own mostly."

"I'm sorry. I never really realized how much I took for granted having both parents living at home with me." She didn't know how to act in this kind of situation. Closest she ever got to being some kind of comforting to someone like this was that time she ran into Sammy Henderson in the bathroom at school right after she had her heart broken by Oliver Griggs and that was more just because Selene's shoulder was the first one she could cling to and cry on. All Sammy did for 31 whole minutes was tearfully explain what had happened. What was she supposed to do here? Hug Erin? Maybe just standing there was the best thing. "Kind of makes me rethink my idea to trip across the US."

"I feel a little selfish about it all now more than anything, I spent sixteen years just being a child and not even trying to grow up, then this happens, I have a brief rebellious phase, but life kicks my ass when I find out that little brother decides he's going to screw up at school and auntie doesn't even try." She shrugs to her roommate, "He got held back a year, I just got yelled at and decided to leave. I mean, outside of mom leaving, I guess it's a good thing I learned it was time to be an adult at least?"

Selene responds, "That's definitely way more problems than I've ever had to deal with. But it looks like you're doing good now. Didn't let it kill you, right?"
Was this the right thing to say? That felt right. Right?

Erin shakes her head, unconsciously twisting the hem of her shirt, "No, no... I just wish I knew what happened to her."

"Have you ever tried looking through records?" Oh no, she might think you're talking about obituaries. Derail that train. Derail it. "Not to be morbid, but newspaper articles? Marriages are usually reported in them. As are," DON'T SAY DEATH CERTIFICATES. "arrest records... if you think she might have had any of those?"
Pheeeew. That one was close. She started to sweat, only partly noticably.

Erin blinks, "What? No... the police helped look, of course, and her disappearance was even in the newspaper for about a week."
She stares at her one-woman audience. "I never told you, huh?"

Selene shakes her head, "No, this is the first I'm hearing about this, as it would if it were Erik and Marrok, I imagine. She went missing?"

"Yeah... it was news at the time, too. We lived in a little farmhouse at the time, though we didn't grow any crops. It was cheaper than anything else around as the farmer was retiring and wanted to let the land go fallow for a while. So, one day I'm watching television in the front room, little brother's in his room doing whatever the hell little brothers... probably plan to annoy their sisters... and mom tells me she's got to to go the store real quick. She was in the middle of making dinner and the fuse blew for half the kitchen while she was using the blender." She continues, "Seemed normal, it happened a lot since the electric heater was on the same circuit, which was a terrible design. Anyway, she tells me to not burn the house down and be good, keep an eye on Jeremy, all that, right? A few hours go by, finally I call Ace and the owner's closing up, says Mom never got there. They hadn't sold a fuse all day. It was a Friday, so no hurry and I didn't want to panic anyone... but by the morning I was worried. When I picked up the phone to call 911, though, it rang. The police were calling me. They found her car, looked up the registration on the computer, and one of the cops was a friend of hers and knew our home number already. The plastic in the car was slightly melted and the metal and wood panel was scorched, but there weren't ... remains ... inside."


Erin's uncharacteristically quiet for a moment, "That's how I knew what a Geiger counter was, it was going nuts when they were checking the car."

"Oh... Sorry if it brought back any bad memories for you...." Selene responds softly. She makes a mental note to try not to pull out the Geiger counter around her ever again. At least not without asking Erin if it's alright with her first.

"It's childish, maybe, but I just assume she was kidnapped by aliens or maybe she got her own superpowers and is out there watching over me or something? I was already able to cast small spells by then, so that's what my mind leapt to. Like, maybe she was fey, and her people took her back under the hill for all I know? Still, I don't think she's ... dead or anything, just missing. But I still miss her and wish, y'know..." She sniffles and wipes her eyes with the recently removed dress, "I swear some days I just can't grow up and act like a kid. I mean, I act like a kid."

Selene sits next to her current roommate and newest friend and leans against her, "I'd say you're definitely more grown up than I am. I'm still in that 'dissasociation with everything involving my parents' phase. Don't most girls have this right around 12 or something?"

Erin looks slightly confused, the sentence distracting her a moment, "I have no idea what you're talking about, I didn't take any psychology or child development classes in high school."

Selene replies in an exaggerated valley girl accent, " 'um, mom, you're like, insanely grody, and I'd really appreciate it if you're not around when Tony's coming over, I don't want him to think I'm a weirdo.' - You didn't know those kinds of girls?"

"Ah, that, yeah. I didn't get a whole lot of that, my mom was pretty cool, even if she liked weird music. I'd be willing to bet she dropped acid while pregnant."

Selene almost doesn't even acknowledge the rather odd thing that was said. "Yeah, well one of those girls.. Well. I think I'm just getting there, when most girls are having their first heartbreak and this at the same time, I'm...well, I'm travelling."

Erin glances to the door, with an almost devilish grin, "Well, there's still opportunity for you here maybe? We're in interesting company on the trip, after all."

"You know..." Selene says after thinking about it after a moment, "I wonder if maybe there's something... off about me? I don't exactly like-like boys ... or girls. Maybe it's just one of those things of not finding the right one yet? But maybe, it's just like being colorblind. Where you just don't... get?.. it?"

Erin shrugs, "I've had crushes, you're not missing a whole lot other than just having the experience. Mom's advice was just to relax and let whatever happens happen, as long as you're okay with it."

Selene frowns and continues, "But that's usually your litmus test, isn't it? The 'crush' feeling? Which I have no idea what that is. And on that note, flirting either, for that matter! I hear that word all the time and I still can't exactly sure what flirting is!" She becomes slightly flushes even talking about this.

Erin watches her a moment, slightly nervous about the sudden change in Selene's sheepish demeanor to that of a jaguar. "So, um, I could go visit the boys if you need a few minutes?"

"No, no, I'm fine... Just... Ugh... Society and relationships and interaction and all, you know? Why can't it just be easy? Why can't everyone talk to each other just like you and me right now?"

Erin nods, "I know, I know... you know that day in the grocery store, right?"

"The one where we were almost eaten? And me almost burned alive? Almost?"

Erin vigorously nods, "So... I mean, Karen -- the cashier, I mean -- was totally a bitch to me and all, and you I guess don't know about that, but she was trying to embarrass me for buying spermicidal jelly, as there was a news report of a rape in the paper, so I decided maybe I should get some protection against getting pregnant. Despite her insisting I'm a huge slut, I actually ... haven't done anything yet, but figured if a really nice guy offered, I'd go for it to get it over with. But... here it is. Uh, wow, it's not even been a week? Feels like ages. Anyway, here it is and I've already changed my mind."
Erin picks up the tube of jelly and a couple packs of condoms, shows them to Selene.

Selene picks up a loose condom, opens it up, and starts blowing it into a balloon.


Erin watches Selene hold the condom to her lips and inflate it, "Um, that night, when I probably should've been baffled at seeing you guys go in there like the A-Team? Instead I was wondering if I would acquire werewolfism through sex or if our child would be born with it." Then flushes, suddenly regretting being so loose-lipped, "please don't tell Marrok that, of course."

Selene puffs, partially inflating the condom, "Well, it depends on what mythology you're following, I'd assume..." huff "I belive the majority of the time, it is spread only through..." huff "bites, although..." huff " it's possible it can be bestowed upon someone by other means. And sure, girlie, you're secret's safe with me," Selene winks, folding up the condom like a balloon.

Erin looks at the older girl, trying to inflate a condom, "You, uh... know what's actually supposed to go where your lips just were, right?"

"Ppshh, yeah, I've had sex-ed. I feel so bad for my old Mrs. Ward, having to give the talk to that room full of girls. She seemed as lost as we were." Squeak, squeak, Selene continues to twist the prophylactic. "But just because it's supposed to be there, doesn't mean it has, silly."

A few finishing touches leaves a balloon animal dog in her hands, oddly shaped and proportioned, but still recognizable and functional, and bounces it around the room.
 
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ZombWie

Hircus Hornbrow
A few hours into my first patrol and I have my hand on the hilt of my gun.

"Keep your hands where I can see them!" Jane says as she approaches the couple in the alley. A second later she is laying flat on her face and somehow she has discharged her sidearm. Adrenaline rushes through her body and she stands up just as quick as she went down. The girl in the alley is screaming, her ears are ringing and panic is welling up in her chest. Then the door opens and Wenda steps out.

" Oh hey! There you are!" says Wenda.
 

ramonlimon2

Junior Member
After the officer leaves and goes back on patrol, Erik moves the van and parks about a block away. He and Selene begin walking in the direction Erin and Marrok ran off in, hoping to reunite the party before danger struck.

"Do you have any idea where they went?" Selene asks.

"Look for a trail of shed hair," Erik responds, somewhat joking, as Selene takes the lead.

They eventually come across an alley with a guy standing around smoking a cigarette. "Hello there. My friends wandered off without us while we were parking the car, did you happen to see them? Both about my age, one's a girl about my size, the other is a hairy guy?" Selene says to him.

"No, sorry." the man responds. He takes another drag of his cigarette, uninterested in talking further. "Alright, thanks." says Selene and she and Erik continue on their way. The pair continue down the main street until it becomes clearly residential. Seeing no sign of the others, they move to head back to the van. Suddenly a sound rings out, either a gunshot or single firework, too far away for either to properly tell.

Erik bolts off to investigate the sound. He gets lost among the unfamiliar streets though, and eventually ends up in a much more run-down section of the town. With no sense of direction, he continues onward and hopes for the best. It's a college town he thinks to himself, how big can it be?

A scream breaks him out of his worried reverie, and once again Erik rushes into the unkown.
 

heylookitsme

I SEE YOU
"That's awfully impressive, Erik. The way you both didn't buckle under the pressure *and* seemed to thrive in it. I was about to give you legal advice on how to put off a ticket for so long the police can't even remember ticketing you and therefore can't prove it happened. One of my teachers did that once. Best thing I learned in school. Next to simple arithmetic."
They hop out of the van, and after a brief exchange, Selene pointing out the way that she last saw them head, before they were even being pulled over. "I think that's the way they were heading, if you want to try to follow them." He already seems to have a headstart, so following, they come to the man with the greasy apron and the tired, empty, rather dead look in his eyes. The walk down the street and the pop goes off. Erik runs off. Selene, rather having had a bearing than just blindly swinging for the fences, goes back to the chef, who's stomping and crushing out his butt, and interrupts his usual routine, yet again.
Smiling, as though to pay him for his time, she pipes up with "Terribly sorry to bother you again, but I'm looking for Herbert street as well, could you direct me to it? A simple point will suffice."
"You again? You're not on the right track. Go to main. Then down 3 blocks. Take a Left. There."

"Many thanks, again! I'll try to be back later, to eat this time." Hector's, a Greek joint. "They have gyros. Those always sounded interesting. I wonder what deserts they have."

If Erik was looking for her, he wouldn't find her easily. So she started to whistle. First up on the Selene mouthwinds section, Dreams by Fleetwood Mac. Let's see if she doesn't get the whole block dancing. Down three... Over one. Herbert Street, here it was. Big white building... big white bui-there it is! The White Lady Hotel. Seems... Almost... Racially charged, now that she read the name in front of her. Oh well. No one seemed to be around, so she just walked right on in. "They know to be here, so I'll just wait here for them."
And so she did. And put her plan into action. Her waiting plan.
 

Moonpenny

New Member
Marrok waves to Wenda, "Oh, hey! Was this where you work? Great to see you, uh... again!"

Marrok sets Erin down slowly, but stays close enough to be able to pick her up again quickly.


Erin moves to position next to, but slightly behind Marrok, "Good evening!" Her force wall kept against her back to protect against more stray inadvertently fired bullets.

Wenda replies, "I was thinking you two would come in the front side of the Hotel. I just happened to be downstairs taking inventory of the, uh... towels." Says the woman from the door.

The officer walks forward, suspicion writ large upon her face. "You know these two, Wenda?"

Wenda smiles, "Yeah, they are freinds! I was expecting them earlier, but they must have gotten themselves lost"


"Oh, shit" Marrok says under his breath, then aloud, "Of course we know Wenda, um... she's my grandma's friend."

"Who's your grandmother?" Asks Officer Jane.

"Oh! You don't know her. SHe's an old pen pal." Answers Wenda


Marroks eyes go wide, and he points to Wenda, confirming everything she says.

"What's your name?" Jane asks Marrok, and to Erin, "And yours too Ginger."


Marrok replies, "Oh, uh... My name is Patrick."

"Erin Rose, Officer," Erin replies.

"You two are lucky Wenda was here to vouch for you. How about you not pick a dark alley for your next make out session." Says Jane

Wenda laughs and looks you both up and down, "Make out session. Were you two sucking face back here?"


"Sorry, we thought since it was behind the hotel it'd be safe enough... I just didn't know you were going to pull a gun on us!"

Erin then turns to Marrok, "I thought you said it was safe here?"

Marrok gives Wenda a shy smile then turns to Erin and jabs his elbow into her side gently, "Don't make things worse." he says under his breath.

Erin nods submissively, "Yes, dear."

"Yeah, that was an acc... Yeah, well I didn't know what I was walking into here. You two be safe. G'night Wenda." Jane waves and walks back to her cruiser.

As she steps away, Marrok breathes out for the first time in about a minute.

"You know the guy with the afro on the painting show, Wenda? Bob Ross? Well, like he says, there's no mistakes, just happy little accidents. Anyway, I'm Erin, of course, and I'm pleased to meet you."

Erin curtseys.
 

ZombWie

Hircus Hornbrow
The White Lady Hotel is much larger than the surrounding buildings. There is a small crescent driveway in front of a split staircase that leads up to the front door. The White Lady is a stately white Victorian building that has seen better days. It's not that it is in disrepair. The exterior looks like it has a fresh coat of paint. It looks like it has been restored in the past few years, but whoever did the restoration must have missed a few episodes of "This Old House". The repairs are far from authentic to the original building's design. There are modern materials used to patch antique siding. The few areas where the spindle work is missing have been replaced with white aluminum tubing. The door is a massive brown oak door with a plate glass window that reads "The White Lady" in adhesive vinyl letters.

Selene walks through the large door in the front of The White Lady Hotel. A small brass bell behind the door rings a bright tone and continues ringing for a few seconds.

The lobby has a dingy red carpet that is very clean but has seen better days. The walls are clearly patched and repatched in places that must have had water damage not too long ago. There are a few folks milling about the lobby and sitting in the bar which can be seen just off the lobby to the right. The main desk is directly across the lobby from the door. Next to the desk sits a massive curly haired man strumming on his guitar. He has a guitar case on the floor in front of himself with a solitary dollar bill resting in the center of the red velvet interior.

A short woman with a tight black perm and glasses comes up to the front desk and asks, "Hi there! How can I help you?" Her Southern accent slides out like a pat of butter on a fresh biscuit. "Welcome to The White Lady."
 
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