[12:42:31 PM] ST: As our intrepid heroes exit the airport (sans Victor), they find waiting for them a mid-size SUV hybrid from Enterprise Rent-A-Car, courtesy of AX Enterprises. Already put into the GPS is the address to The Wiltern, a somewhat prestigous venue indeed.
[12:44:33 PM] Harry: Harry gets in to drive. “Saddle up, kids.”
[12:44:37 PM] Malif: Malif walks towards the passenger seat, letting Harry drive so he can keep an eye out and observe the town as we go.
[12:44:57 PM] Sanura: Sanura piles in with the others, her luggage managed though she questions. “Where’d Vic go?” she questions as she settles herself and her cat.
[12:47:39 PM] Harry: “Stormed off. Guess he needs some alone time.”
[12:50:18 PM] Malif: Malif shrugs, and nods. “He didn’t seem keen on our more subtle plan, so maybe he’s off with his own plan? Who can say?”
[12:52:02 PM] Sanura: Sanura nods slightly “He knows the hotel I suppose” she murmurs as she waits for them to get underway. “When do we go meet our .. employer I suppose for now?”
[12:53:28 PM] Harry: Harry starts the ride up once everyone’s in. “I seem to recall Al saying he told her he’d be getting involved? Frankly, half the briefing’s faded on me. All this team stress…”
[12:54:33 PM] Malif: Malif nods, and sighs. “Hopefully he’ll be able to settle in and get used to working alongside others.”
[12:57:56 PM] ST: The trip takes about a half-hour. Traffic is relatively light today, at least until you hit Central LA. Luckily the concert hall isn’t too deep into the city, making the traffic bearable. As you start heading into the parking lot, you’re stopped by the booth attendant. He clears your authorization and waves you in. It’s not long before you pass Ja-Cuze’s “tour bus” which is actually not a very large or ostentatious vehicle—more a well-decorated van—just ostentatious enough to qualify for a performance at the Wilhern.
[12:58:09 PM] Harry: “And we have these guys who are opening for her…”
[12:58:13 PM] Harry: “That helps.”
[12:59:56 PM] Malif: “Opening for her? Isn’t that her own ?”
[1:00:02 PM] Sanura: Sanura nods her head slightly “though I don’t think I’ll pass for a roady” a faint smile on her lips as she glances at the ‘tour bus’ “Think the lady of the umn house is home?”
[1:02:55 PM] Malif: “How long until she performs?”
[1:04:51 PM] Sanura: Sanura checks the stuff they were given on arrival, surely they’d been handed a program?
[1:07:00 PM] ST: (( Ja-Cuze will be doing a Friday, Saturday, and Sunday performance, then packing up to leave late Sunday night. It’s currently Monday. ))
[1:07:45 PM] Malif: “Well, no performance today, so she may or may not be home. One way to find out.”
[1:11:36 PM] Harry: Harry takes a moment to stop and think. While his mind raced ninety-to-nothing, there were still things that got past him in the moment, things he reacts to, but doesn’t remember later.
[1:13:09 PM] Harry: “Okay. Let’s get everyting into place, then go introduce ourselves.” He pulls down his far-too-expensive shades, and helps everyone with the load. Since he doesn’t know the score with the band, he keeps things under human maximums.
[1:14:18 PM] Malif: Malif follows Harry with a nod.
[1:15:28 PM] Sanura: Sanura lends a hand here and there where she’s able to get the band’s stuff all set up mostly she just hangs back out of the way. Her gaze moves over the staff, taking note of who seems to be doing what.. anyone that looks suspicious so on and so forth.
[1:22:51 PM] Malif: “You seem to prefer the lead most of the time, Harry, or shall I do the honors?”
[1:24:03 PM] Harry: “Hey, I’m just trying to keep this whole thing together. If you see a place to jump in and do your thing, be my guest.”
[1:24:07 PM] ST: The members of Absolute Illusion haul out their equipment in a well-practiced manner.
“Dude, have you seen this Ja-Cuze? Hot. She got the booty,” speaketh the until-now reticent Jeff.
Abel soundlessly pulls out his snare.
“Eh, not my cup of tea,” says Mark.
“Man, I don’t understand you and your thing for Asian women.”
Abel continues silently unpacking.
[1:25:49 PM] Malif: Malif nods. “Well this seems to be a more social moment.” so he walks up to knock on the tour bus door.
[1:27:28 PM] ST: A man with a cap opens the door, giving Malif a once-over. After a moment of consideration, he asks, “You looking for Ja-Cuze?”
[1:27:45 PM] Malif: Malif nods. “That’s right. She’s expecting us.”
[1:27:51 PM] Harry: Harry follows, pondering how he’d really like a milkshake.
[1:27:57 PM] Malif: “Mr Umul’s retinue.”
[1:29:47 PM] Sanura: Sanura smirks faintly at their apparent cover.. it could be worse though she supposes. Her sunglasses pushed up to rest on the top of her head as she crosses her arms and waits with only a faint air of impatience for the becapped fellow to allow them passage.
[1:30:57 PM] Malif: (Becapped! Nice one :D )
[1:33:08 PM] ST: The man nods. “She and her crew are inside the building, setting up for rehearsal. Just went in about ten minutes ago.” He motions to the door, which is guarded by a large, musclebound man in a black t-shirt and jeans. “Just ask Vince to let you in.”
[1:34:07 PM] Malif: “And what do we tell Mr Vince so he knows we’re cleared?”
[1:34:12 PM] Sanura: Sanura smiles “thanks fella” turning on heal she was eager to meet the gal they were supposed to be lookin’ out for.
[1:35:22 PM] ST: The becapped fellow offers a shrug. “You don’t have to worry about it. If Ja-Cuze knows you’re coming, he knows.”
[1:36:39 PM] Malif: Malif nods. “I thank you, then!” And then heads over to greet Vince. “Your becapped friend says to tell you we’re expected inside.”
[1:37:01 PM] Malif: (Quick, someone set up a counter so we can keep track of how many times we say becapped! XD )
[1:37:09 PM] Sanura: Sanura grins faintly as they come up to Vince. “We’re with the band” she tacks on, because who hasn’t wanted to say that just once.. at least a little bit.
[1:38:16 PM] Harry: Harry chuckles at that, and grins at Sanura. “The lady knows we’re here. A mutual friend sent us. Relax.”
[1:46:07 PM] ST: Mark stares at Harry for a moment, and then sends a sidelong glance to his unusually quiet friend. What the hell does a sports star have to do with a music performance?
Vince doesn’t respond for a moment, staying in his cross-armed position, his expression unreadable behind his large sunglasses. “Haven’t s-s-seen you b-b-before. W-which b-b-band? Which f-f-friend?”
[1:47:24 PM] Harry: “We are here to see Ja-Cuze, she was told to expect us by our mutual friend Alejandro.”
[1:49:52 PM] ST: Jeff snickers a little upon hearing the big man’s stutter. Abel gives him a quick kick in the shins, which elicits from Jeff a dark glare.
[1:50:37 PM] Mike: Mike gives both Jeff and Abel dark glares in return.
[1:53:18 PM] Sanura: Sanura is glad Able takes care of Jeff because she was bout to turn and do the same. She smiles slightly and rests her hand on Vinces crossed arms a moment. “Can we go on in or do we need to be announced” she smiles a little playfully, trying to reasure the guy.
[1:56:13 PM | Edited 1:56:38 PM] ST: “I d-d-don’t know a-any Alejand-d-dro.” Vince is clearly being purposefully difficult.
[1:57:18 PM] Sanura: Sanura tsks softly “well we’ll just wait for you to go check, wouldn’t want to get you into trouble.” Stepping back and folding her hands behind her.
[1:58:27 PM] ST: Jeff crosses his arms and lifts his chin, about ready to give this bodyguard a talking-to.
[1:58:37 PM] Malif: Malif smiles warmly at Vince. “Your friend in the bus can vouch for us if you want to check with him, we can wait.”
[1:58:58 PM] Harry: Harry takes off his glasses. "Do you recognize the name Harry “The Synergy” Mercury?"
[1:59:22 PM] Mike: Mike places a hand on Jeff’s shoulder and gives him a stern look, shaking his head.
[2:03:25 PM] ST: Jeff shrugs Mike off and settles for simply glaring at Vince.
“Who, B-b-bobby? He’s just the d-driver.” The bodyguard doesn’t seem too impressed with Harry. “D-d-didn’t know you were a f-fan of hip-hop, M-m-mr. Mercury.”
[2:04:33 PM] Harry: “Then you haven’t seen my biography, though I usually am more for speed rap. As for now, just ask the lady if we have a meeting planned.”
[2:04:58 PM] Harry: “You’ll find we check out.”
[2:06:20 PM] Harry: (I’ve figured out Harry plays for the various Atlanta Teams. Braves, Hawks, Falcons.)
[2:07:44 PM] ST: Again Mark glances at Mike, who’s usually the first to step in. Finally he speaks up. “Look, we’re Absolute Illusion, opening for Ja-Cuze. I’m Mark Knyre, rhythm guitarist. This is Mike Umul, lead singer and guitarist, Jeff Myers, bassist, and Abel Marsh, drummer. Here, I got ID.” He offers his wallet to the bodyguard. Vince doesn’t check it, but does say, “A-a-all right, I’ll a-ask M-miss Cruz.” He disappears into the building.
[2:11:48 PM] Mike: Mike elbows Mark with a small grin. “I was just gonna say that before you did, you know. I had it handled.”
[2:21:29 PM | Edited 2:21:52 PM] ST: After a long wait, the door opens again, revealing Ja-Cuze in a simple tank-top and sweatpants—clearly workout clothes, sans the requisite perspiration—followed by Vince. Even though she’s not done-up like she was for the photo during the briefing, she’s still a very striking woman: dark hair, smoldering dark eyes, tan skin, and graceful curves, with a bit of an aggressive air to her.
“Hey, sorry about that. Vince here got real protective of me since we drove in.” She nods towards a cop car that’s parked just off to the side of the building. “I think he hates the Shitheads and the LAPD more than I do.” She grins. “So, Absolute Illusion. And you’re all with Xaxalpa, too, right?” She pronounces the name effortlessly, lapsing into the proper accent.
[2:22:07 PM] Mike: Mike nods to her. “That we are.”
[2:22:42 PM] Malif: Malif nods, and smiles. “Indeed. Does something in particular have Vince on edge?”
[2:24:18 PM] ST: Jeff elbows Mark and nods at Ja-Cuze. Mark rolls his eyes.
[2:25:16 PM] Malif: hehe
[2:26:10 PM] ST: “We were pulled over on our way in,” Alejandra says. “That cop tried to get us on speeding. Couldn’t. He’s tailed us since.”
Vince lets out a little “Heh.”
[2:27:09 PM] Sanura: Sanura sighs softly. “Charming..” pursing her lips “still if that’s all the trouble you have is a clingy cop then it’s not so bad hmn?”
[2:27:17 PM] Mike: “So there’s police actually following you? I can see the need for Vince, then.”
[2:28:21 PM] Harry: “Problematic. We’re here about Mr. Xaxalpa’s conversations with you about his concerns for your situation?”
[2:28:40 PM] Malif: Malif ponders. “I’ll have to check on this cop a little later, just in case there’s more to him than we know.”
[2:32:45 PM] ST: “Oh, he’s just here to deter the mooks. Really, he’s just a big teddy bear when you get to know him.” She smirks at Vince, who remains impassive. After Harry speaks, she says, “Yeah. To be honest, I don’t know why I agreed to this arrangement. I can handle any trouble that comes my way. Vince here can tell you.” The bodyguard chuckles a little. “But, I guess, since you’re all here… you’re welcome to watch the rehearsal. Nothing too exciting. You’re probably better off going to a club or something.”
Mark, Jeff, and Abel exchange puzzled looks with each other, but choose not to speak.
[2:33:56 PM] Harry: “You’ll find us useful. And the band a good choice to open for you, I think.”
[2:34:06 PM] Malif: “Well, I could use a bit of a walk after that airplane ride. Anyone want a coffee?”
[2:35:07 PM] Harry: Harry smiles. “I’m dying for something full of sugar and caffiene. Since things are quiet, how about I snag us some food and drinks?”
[2:36:14 PM] Sanura: Sanura nods her head slightly “I’ll go watch the rehersal then” in other words keep an eye out.
[2:36:20 PM] Malif: “Even better, I’ll come along.”
[2:36:35 PM] ST: Ja-Cuze raises an eyebrow at Harry. “A sports star, getting coffee for me? Didn’t think I was /that/ famous yet.”
[2:36:52 PM] Malif: Malif whispers to Harry “Lets get a look at that cop on our way”
[2:37:28 PM] Sanura: [I haven’t been feelin’ well so if you could mark me that’d be great, I wanna go lay down]
[2:37:29 PM] Mike: “Neither did I. But now look at me. I’m rolling with Harry Mercury, my band’s opening for Ja-Cuze, Absolute Illusion’s coming up in the world!”
[2:39:23 PM] Harry: “Frankly, I spend alot of time looking for excuses to keep moving. I am easily bored. Though, I am very interested in seeing the sound tests. I’ve been considering a try at rap myself.”
[2:39:55 PM] Mike: “I think if you ever tried to Rap, you’d blow the speakers out with how fast you are.”
[2:41:42 PM] ST: She gives him an appraising look. “Yeah, okay. I think we got time for that. Once you get back with my Venti 1 pump caramel, 1 pump white mocha, 2 scoops vanilla bean powder, extra ice frappuchino with 2 shots poured over the top apagotto style with caramel drizzle under and on top of the whipped cream, double cupped.” Ja-Cuze offers Harry a smirk.
[2:42:55 PM] Mike: Mike busts out laughing. “And here I thought I had specific tastes!”
[2:43:27 PM] Harry: “Christ.” He pulls out his smartphone and starts typing. “Give it to me again.”
[2:45:16 PM] ST: “Relax, man. I was kidding. Small coffee, black. And a medium mocha for Vince here.” She pats him on the shoulder. “I’ll pay you back.”
[2:45:41 PM] Malif: Malif chuckles. “With an order like that, she’s definitely on her way to bigtime stardom.” He starts to head back outside and in the direction of that cop car from earlier. “Meet you on the way there.”
[2:46:12 PM] Harry: Harry chuckles. “Hey, I’d have got it if that’s what you wanted, but my memory sucks. Small, black. Medium mocha, Vince. Anyone else? I’m buying.”
[2:47:57 PM] ST: Abel points at Vince and holds up two fingers.
[2:48:13 PM] Mike: “Iced Triple shot Hazelnut Mocha with Whipped Cream in a Venti cup.”
[2:48:41 PM] ST: Ja-Cuze gives Mike an incredulous look.
[2:49:10 PM] Mike: Mike looks at Ja-Cuze. “What? I like my coffee. Warms up the vocals.”
[2:49:28 PM] Malif: (outed as a filthy Starbucks slave XD )
[2:52:52 PM] ST: “Miss Cruz, are you ready to continue rehearsals yet?” a distant voice asks from inside.
“Just a minute!” she calls back. She looks back at the group, and glances at the cop car. Her following smirk is smug with a hint of fierceness. “Hey, mind getting the cop coffee and a donut while you’re at it? Tell him it’s courtesy of me.”
“Miss C-c-cruz…” warns Vince.
“Hey, relax, Vince. He can’t arrest me for it.”
[2:53:40 PM] Malif: “Sure thing!” Malif calls from halfway through the exit door.
[2:55:49 PM] Harry: Harry types in all orders, and heads out with whoever’s coming.
[2:56:07 PM] ST: “Thanks.” She nods to Mike and his buddies. “If you don’t mind, I’d like to hear a song or two of yours. Listened to a couple MP3s, but I wanna hear how you do live.”
[2:58:29 PM] Mike: Mike smiles. “You got it. Boys, rehersal time. Light the amps, string the tunes, let’s give a show!” He calls it out like he’s a man directing a ship’s crew. It’d be something he’d have been doing with them for a while now.
[3:00:08 PM] ST: Mark gives Ja-Cuze his own appraising look. The woman had balls, no doubt about it. He then looks at Mike and smiles a bit. But there was something being left unsaid here, and that wasn’t about to escape him…
[3:02:13 PM] Harry: Once away from the mortals, Harry looks at Malif. “Are we on the same page that this cop’s probably on the gang’s payroll, or a tool of Fate at the least?”
[3:02:21 PM] ST: The inside of the concert hall is grant, filled to the brim with art deco, multi-level seats, and a generous stage. Various stage hands and tech crew members are bustling about, setting up amps and so forth. The lights on the stage transition from white to pink to green to blue and from strobing to solid to a smooth rotation, clearly being tested.
[3:03:07 PM] Mike: Mike gives a loud whistle to test the acoustics.
[3:03:48 PM] Malif: Malif nods to Harry. “Not sure what , but he’s… something. Leave it to me.”
[3:03:55 PM] ST: The whistle echoes beautifully off the walls and draws the eyes of more than one stage hand.
[3:04:24 PM] Malif: “When I give him the gift, stay nearby but out of sight if possible.”
[3:05:18 PM] Harry: Okay, off to Starbucks, and the closest sandwich shop as well. Arby’s or better.
[3:05:32 PM] Mike: Mike nods with a smile. “Nice. This hall shall echo with the tones of the Illusion, boys!” He would look at Ja-Cuze inquisitively. “Want one of our own songs, or a cover?”
[3:05:47 PM] Malif: Agreed.
[3:06:52 PM] ST: “Why not one of each. We’re here all week.”
[3:07:51 PM] ST: (( http://media.timeout.com/images/resizeBestFit/100520697/660/370/image.jpg ))
[3:09:34 PM] Mike: Mike shrugs. “True enough.” He looks at the others of his band. “Let’s do a cover first. Just to warm up. Ghostqueen.” He’d then pull out his own guitar and check the tuning with his own finger, plucking each string and testing it. Though the beauty of this thing… didn’t need tuning. He was just doing it for kicks. He’d then hoist it and prepare for play, waiting on the others.
[3:12:44 PM] Harry: I’m gonna linger at a simple sprint away, about 20 yards.
[3:16:34 PM] ST: (( Dex + Guitar, Cha + Singing, and Cha + Presence ))
[3:17:19 PM] Mike: ((2 successes on Guitar.))
[3:18:13 PM] Mike: ((Alright. Cha+Singing.))
[3:18:35 PM] Mike: ((5 sucesses. Then the finisher.))
[3:18:50 PM] Mike: ((And the finisher is a 7.))
[3:23:43 PM] ST: It’s clear that the band needed a warm-up after Mike had spent so much time away from them. Jeff breaks a string on his bass and Mark lapses a coughing fit after his throat closes up on one of his backup notes. But the show must go on, and indeed it does. At least it finished well enough…
[3:23:50 PM] ST: (( And cutting to Malif and Harry with the cop. ))
[3:27:07 PM] ST: The cop slowly rolls down the window as Malif summons him. He’s wearing a pair of dark aviator glasses. His black hair is in a crew cut and his dark blue police uniform is crisp, with his polished badge catching the ever-present harsh LA sun. “What?” he asks.
[3:29:21 PM] Malif: Malif hands him the coffee cup and the paper baggie with the donut, smiling genuinely. “A gift from Miss Cuze, officer.”
[3:36:29 PM | Edited 3:36:42 PM] ST: The muscles in the cop’s jaw flex. “How generous of her.” He accepts the proffered gifts, takes the top off of the coffee, takes a slow, meaningful sip, and dumps it out on the street next to Malif. “Oops. How clumsy.” He drops the empty cup on the pavement. “Please do me a favor.” He takes a bite of the donut and hands it back to Malif. “Tell Ja-Cuze that I’m sorry.” He doesn’t sound particularly contrite.
[3:37:50 PM] Harry: (Second unnecessary asshole.)
[3:38:14 PM] Victor: (Welcome to LA)
[3:38:27 PM] Malif: Malif just keeps smiling. “And what is it that I should tell you are sorry for, precisely? Why are you spying on her exactly?” (Blurt It Out knack)
[3:38:47 PM] Malif: (If he IS spying on her, he’s forced to tell me exactly why)
[3:39:03 PM] Malif: (In as much detail as possible)
[3:39:22 PM] Victor: (he could resist? but if he has no legend its harder to do so)
[3:39:24 PM] Malif: http://www.gothambynight.com/scion/manipulation.htm#blurt
[3:39:25 PM] ST: (( Manip + Empathy ))
[3:39:50 PM] Malif: (I think it might be a contested roll to resist? Not sure how JSR does it)
[3:39:56 PM] ST: (( It is contested. ))
[3:40:02 PM] Victor: Wits integrety and legned
[3:40:19 PM] ST: (( Willpower + Integrity + Legend ))
[3:40:26 PM] ST: (( Wits only if you have the knack for it ))
[3:40:29 PM] Malif: 9 hits
[3:46:02 PM] ST: “For my clumsiness, of course.” The officer gives Malif a shit-eating grin. “My boss chose me to keep an eye on her, catch her speeding or double-parking or some shit. Rile her up, get her angry enough to do something stupid, then take her in.”
[3:47:00 PM] Malif: Malif smiles wide. “I’m sure he did. And who is your boss, officer? What has she done to upset him so?”
[3:48:51 PM] ST: His grin fades as he realizes what he just said. “None of your business, citizen.”
[3:49:50 PM] Malif: (Is he wearing a nametag by any chance? Do american cops do that?)
[3:50:03 PM] Mike: ((They do.))
[3:50:11 PM] Malif: (If so I memorize it)
[3:50:22 PM] Harry: (You could blurt him again)
[3:50:33 PM] Harry: (But you’re risking a fatebond)
[3:52:22 PM] Malif: “Come now, officer. I simply wish to know who you work for, since you’re so dedicated to them and doing such a good job.”
[3:52:34 PM] Malif: (10 hits on Blurt again)
[3:52:57 PM] Mike: ((I thought you said it was supposed to be 9 autos, not 8…))
[3:53:10 PM] Malif: dammit XD
[3:53:19 PM] Malif: (I just repeated the last command. So 11 hits :P )
[3:53:30 PM] Malif: (Good catch Majin)
[3:57:17 PM] ST: “Lt. Romero,” says the officer. “I mean…” He furrows his brow and scowls, searching for a way to save that.
[4:00:28 PM] ST: He gives up on groping for a response, turning his eyes back on Malif. His glare can be felt from behind the glasses. He opens the door and begins to get out. “Sir, you don’t sound like you’re from around here. Can I see your passport or visa?”
[4:03:01 PM] Malif: Malif grins at the doctor. “Why no, officer. You may not see my passport.”
[4:03:07 PM] Malif: http://www.gothambynight.com/scion/chaos.htm#paralyzing
[4:03:41 PM | Edited 4:03:47 PM] Malif: (Which comes with the added bonus that he’ll forget I ever talked to him in the first place….)
[4:03:45 PM] ST: (( Wits + Empathy ))
[4:04:12 PM] Malif: 12
[4:04:17 PM] Mike: ((XD You said ‘grins at the doctor’ XD))
[4:04:25 PM] ST: (( LOL good catch ))
[4:05:00 PM] Malif: (I’ll be sure it lasts twice as long as our conversation did, just to be sure)
[4:05:20 PM] Malif: (LOL I did type doctor…. you damn Whovians!)
[4:05:33 PM] Malif: (You made me freudian slip)
[4:06:18 PM] Victor: ((HEHE I WIN!))
[4:06:30 PM] Mike: ((Hey, I was the one who mentioned it first!))
[4:07:01 PM] Malif: (Your comment didnt count Majn, I dont know what Psy Papers are XD And dont tell me :P )
[4:08:55 PM] ST: “I halitosis tutu-terror yipping iris…” His face twists in horror and utter confusion at his own words. He looks around numbly, and it’s clear nothing looks familiar to him.
[4:09:44 PM] Malif: Malif is already out of sight and back inside by the time the cop regains his senses.
[4:09:57 PM] Malif: And unable to hide a smug grin.
[4:10:11 PM] Harry: Harry continues to linger and watch for a bit, to make sure the guy’s no big deal.
[4:11:26 PM] ST: He exits the car and rips off his shirt in horror, proceeding to stagger backwards down the street.
[4:11:34 PM] ST: (( Now back to inside the concert hall. ))
[4:12:08 PM] Malif: (None of you guys can do that XD This be Malif’s niche!)
[4:12:24 PM] Malif: (And yeah. When we need something punched, Malif is useless!)
[4:12:49 PM] Malif: (Oh dear, I think I broke the poor cop XD )
[4:13:22 PM] Malif: (And later he’s gonna wonder why there’s a perfectly good donut on the sidewalk and spilled coffee XD)
[4:13:30 PM] Harry: Harry heads in after Malif. “Hey. Talk with me a sec.”
[4:14:37 PM] Malif: Malif waits for Harry to catch up, not wanting to talk until they are both inside.
[4:15:54 PM] Harry: Once they had a modicum of privacy, Harry taps Malif on the shoulder. “Okay, what was that last thing? I think you drove that guy crazy.”
[4:16:26 PM] ST: Ja-Cuze crosses her arms after the clearly unpolished performance. “Uh… not bad. You’ve all got a lot of… spirit. But all that same shit with the string and the voice better not happen Friday night.”
[4:16:30 PM] ST: (( Victor, your cue to enter ))
[4:16:44 PM] Malif: Malif just smiles mysteriously. “I’m sure I have no idea what you are talking about , Harry.”
[4:16:53 PM] Malif: Its half smirk, half shit-eating-grin, though.
[4:17:25 PM] Harry: “Don’t get cute with me, I’m asking you what that curse does. Is it permanent?”
[4:17:53 PM | Edited 4:17:59 PM] Victor: *Victor Arrives via cab to the concert hall and steps out shirtless again, it hanging from the back pocket of his pants. His hair wet. He walks until someone tries and stops him.*
[4:18:52 PM] Malif: Malif chuckles. “Oh, relax Harry, I’m just joking with you. No, its not permanent. He’ll be fine any second now, in fact, and with no memory of the last couple of minutes.”
[4:18:57 PM] Mike: “You guys haven’t been practicing, have you?” He sighs. “Jeff, string back up. Mark, get some water. I wanna try that song again. Come on, guys. This song is not that tough. We’ve done it dozens of times.”
[4:19:08 PM] Malif: “Not only did he tell me everything I wanted to know, he’ll have no memory I even talked to him at all.”
[4:19:38 PM] Harry: Harry sighs with unhidden relief. “Alright. Last thing we needed was a broken cop. Well done. Let’s check on the rest.”
[4:19:59 PM] Malif: Malif pats Harry on the shoulder. “I’m not that kind of man. I wouldn’t destroy a person like that.”
[4:20:26 PM] Harry: As he heads in with the coffees and food, he whistles. “Soup’s on, ya’ll!”
[4:21:16 PM] Mike: Mike looks towards the whistling and call. “Good timing, too. Take 5, guys.” He goes to Harry, ready for some fucking coffee.
[4:21:23 PM] Malif: Malif is grinning from ear to ear as we walk in to the rest. “Here is your coffee, Miss Cuze. Are you familiar with a Lt. Romero by any chance?”
[4:25:29 PM | Edited 4:26:10 PM] ST: After meeting with the requisite resistance and being cleared with Ja-Cuze, Victor is allowed in. She takes the coffee with a “Thanks,” and sips from it as she listens to Malif’s question. “Yeah. Lt. Romero is an asshole. It’s pretty common knowledge in my old barrio that Los Comemierdas pays him to make sure that he picks the bribed or badly-trained cops to be in charge of investigating murders they commit.”
[4:26:19 PM] Mike: “I’m curious. What does barrio mean, exactly?”
[4:26:42 PM] Malif: “Well that’s who bribed/ordered the one outside to try to get you mad and make a mistake. He seems to want you behind bars.”
[4:26:53 PM] ST: “It means ‘neighborhood’, gringo.”
[4:26:54 PM] Malif: “It means neighborhood, or turf.”
[4:27:05 PM] Malif: Malif chuckles as they answer at the same time.
[4:27:41 PM] ST: “Yeah, I’m not surprised. Looks like my song’s making waves.” She grins and takes another pull of coffee.
[4:28:03 PM] Mike: “Well, excuse me if I’m not Spanish…”
[4:28:32 PM] Harry: He chuckles. “I’m from a trailer park in Alabama and I know what a barrio is.”
[4:29:29 PM] Harry: “But, yeah, this guy’s gonna be our lynchpin. When we shit in his corn flakes, that’s when things are gonna pop off.”
[4:29:38 PM] Victor: *Victor would find the gang sipping their coffee and talking about Barrio’s and simply chuckle* “A barrio isnt a neighbor hood…Its a family. Gringo’s Have neighborhoods, We have Bario’s everyone knows everything, but says nothing, looks out for everyone until your own neck is on the line, then you look the other way.”
[4:29:48 PM] Malif: “The question is, why would Los Comemierdas be angry enough at you to want you arrested?”
[4:29:58 PM] Malif: “Can’t be just taste in music.”
[4:30:12 PM] Harry: “Her music. It points a very popular finger at what they’re doing.”
[4:31:00 PM] Harry: “Same as if I went on TV and started naming off judges and senators who take money from white supremacists in the South. It’s gonna piss off powerful men with fat wallets and loose morals.”
[4:31:21 PM] Malif: “Sounds like Romero is just a pawn, himself, here. Its likely still coming down to their elusive boss.”
[4:33:42 PM] Harry: “Well, he’s gonna be the one with his hand in the cop’s commands. When we piss him off, that’s when we’ll see a real response.”
[4:34:23 PM] Mike: Mike looks around to see if there’s mortals around them.
Mike’s Keen Hearing
[4:35:29 PM] ST: You hear one of the stage hands talking to Mark as he’s gulping down some water. At first they make small talk, but one portion stands out:
“So… what do you think of Miss Cruz so far?” The stage hand’s voice is female, with a very rich timbre and a slight French accent.
“Huh? Oh… Gotta say, she’s got balls of steel. Pissing off the LAPD like that and then giving that fuckin’ cop a donut.”
“Just wait until you see her perform. I guarantee you’ll fall in love.”
He laughs. “Yeah, sure.”
They make some more unimportant small talk before the stage hand attends to her duties.
[4:34:24 PM] Malif: “Hmm. Perhaps we should expose this Romero for his crimes?”
[4:34:40 PM] Malif: “Dig up solid evidence, expose it anonymously”
[4:35:07 PM] Victor: *Victor looks at Harry* “So you want to piss him off? And here I thought this was a security gig.”
[4:35:49 PM] Harry: “Not so much ‘want to’, as figuring out where the line is. Seems smart to plan for when we stumble or just drop trou and piss across it.”
[4:36:16 PM] Malif: “I think regardless, I should try to get more dirt on this guy, so we have a trump card available.”
[4:36:42 PM] ST: (( Majin: The mortals are all busy, but they’re still around, in earshot. ))
[4:36:54 PM] Mike: ((Damn…))
[4:37:04 PM] Victor: *Victor simply nods and thinks to himself*
[4:37:28 PM] Mike: “Trump card… I got a trump card for him if he ever shows himself…”
[4:38:57 PM] ST: Ja-Cuze rolls her eyes. “Look, you guys don’t have to take this so seriously. I know what the LAPD want from me and I won’t give it to them. They won’t get a single hold over me. And I’m not even going to bother worrying about the Shitheads until Tunante himself comes in and wants to have a chat.”
[4:39:31 PM] ST: “Though I’m totally down with you guys exposing Lt. Romero.”
[4:39:57 PM] Malif: Malif looks around at the band members on both sides. “Miss Cuze, there really is a lot more to this than is apparent. Is it possible to speak with you more privately for a moment?”
[4:41:01 PM] Victor: *Victor smirks at Ja-Cuze* “Mija, tu, tu me gusta. Lets just relax we have to be here no need in adding extra stresses. Why go pick a fight if one isnt at our doorstep?”
[4:44:49 PM] Mike: ((Suddenly, there’s trouble on the doorstep. :P))
[4:48:19 PM] ST: Ja-Cuze raises an eyebrow at Vic, smiling. “My thoughts exactly.” She turns to Malif. “‘Miss Cuze’? That’s a new one.” She sighs in exasperation. “All right, fine, we can talk shop.” Ja-Cuze takes another drink from her coffee and rises. “Early lunch, everyone! Moira, mind ordering some Chinese take-out for the crew? Put it all on my card.” She leads the others to the seats at the back of the concert hall.
[4:50:57 PM] Victor: *Simply follows*
[4:51:02 PM] Malif: Malif chuckles. “By the way, I HAVE to ask. Do you have some french in your family? That stage name is just too perfect a wordplay for there not to be….”
[4:53:00 PM] ST: “Nope, at least, not that I know of.” She grins. “I ain’t as look as I dumb, am I?”
[4:54:00 PM] Malif: Malif grins. “And you don’t even look it, either! Now that we’re out of their earshot, I have to ask you. Are you aware that Tunante is …. like you? And us?”
[4:54:29 PM] Harry: “Now then. Simple question. Carbombs, grenades and 50 cal assault weapons. Can you survive them?”
[4:55:26 PM] Harry: “Because that’s just a sample of what’s flying back and forth south of the border. And I have no doubt if we piss Tunante off enough, will be employed here.”
[4:56:26 PM] Victor: *raises hand* " I can." *Victor smirks mockingly*
[4:58:58 PM] Mike: “Pretty sure my groupies can too…”
[4:59:02 PM] Harry: “I have the speed to avoid them. Victor here could probably survive a car bomb down his pants. My question is, can you?”
[4:59:30 PM] Victor: *Chuckles*
[5:02:41 PM] ST: “Being a little melodramatic, aren’t you?” asks Ja-Cuze. “Carbombs, grenades, and assault weapons isn’t the Shitheads’ style. They’re into terror tactics, entender? Hand-to-hand, leaving bodies where they can be found with their hearts ripped out. I can handle being stabbed or shot.” She pauses. “And yes, I know about Tunante. More than you do. He likes giving warnings, making you paranoid. I haven’t got no warning yet, and news of this performance has been public for months. Even if I had, I ain’t gonna let him bully me.”
[5:03:49 PM] Mike: Mike blinks. “What kind of warnings?”
[5:03:56 PM] Harry: “Dramatic? Last month I fought shadow ninjas and a cyclops.”
[5:04:02 PM] Malif: “Hmm, I suppose they are mad enough to want you arrested, but not enough to commit outright murder. Though they seem to like doing that in general.”
[5:04:04 PM] Harry: “I -wish- for grenades.”
[5:05:22 PM] Malif: “Still, is this Romero their only hand in the pockets of the police? Could be useful to remove that link anyway.”
[5:06:34 PM] Harry: He sighs. “Point is, once the cockblock works it’s way up the chain of command, I’d rather us be on our toes.”
[5:11:23 PM] ST: “No, he isn’t the only one. Just the biggest asshole of the bunch.” Ja-Cuze crosses her arms and turns to Harry. “Okay, whatever floats your boat, soldado. But if I were Tunante, I wouldn’t send me warnings either. Acting on my songs means that he feels like I’m a threat to his power, which makes him look that much weaker to all the other dogs waiting to tear him apart.” She smiles smugly and leans back in the seat, kicking her feet up. “So prepare all you want. This is probably gonna be a quiet week for you.”
[5:12:08 PM] Mike: Mike looks at Ja-Cuze inquisitively. “What kind of warnings would he send if he did send them?”
[5:12:29 PM] ST: “Oh, you know. Standard stuff. Bodies with hearts ripped out. Shit like that.”
[5:12:34 PM] Victor: *Victor sighs briefly* Wonderful, then lets just sit back and relax…
[5:12:44 PM] Malif: “And what other methods have you known him to use to get at victims before?”
[5:16:10 PM] Victor: *Victor’s mind is racing* “Heard rumors that he enjoys killing members of other gangs out here, just trying to make a point or is there some other reason. Why havent they tried retaliating? Granted he may be like us, but something else has to be keeping them back.”
[5:19:11 PM] ST: “Those others WERE trying to retaliate. Then they became part of his warning. Not a single body ever had the Los Comemierdas tag on ‘em. Heard rumors of Shitheads who were supposedly killed during a gang fight up and walking around the next night like nothing’s wrong.”
[5:19:48 PM] Victor: *Looks towards Mike.* “Sounds like your kind of party.”
[5:20:24 PM | Edited 5:20:42 PM] ST: She raises an eyebrow at Mike. “Your pappy’s Mictlantecuhtli too?”
[5:21:45 PM] Malif: “No, his father is a bit more agreeable, even if he’s in a similar career.”
[5:22:15 PM] Mike: “Baron Samedi. Death God. But also of parties.”
[5:23:20 PM] ST: “I’ll take your word for it.” Ja-Cuze gives Mike another look of appraisal.
[5:23:29 PM] Victor: *Victor smirks a bit* “Well if he is bringing the dead back, then…. *Rubs his wrists and shakes his head a bit* Gonna be harder than we thought…Who knows how many are his pawns……” *whispers* “Damn you Athena….”
[5:24:15 PM] Mike: “Well, if he’s got an army of zombies, who better to face them than the Puppetmaster?” He pantomimes manipulating marionette strings.
[5:25:39 PM] Malif: “Who is this Puppetmaster? Another ally of your father?”
[5:25:45 PM] Victor: *Victor chuckles* “What you got….A handful? You just said … if he’s got an army? What you gonna do go make more real quick try and up your ranks?”
[5:26:17 PM] Harry: Harry rolls his eyes. “Okay. Cards are on the table. I’m just concerned things are going to come to a head while we’re here. So, if you even -think- he’s making noise, or a move on you and yours, let us know.”
[5:26:20 PM] Malif: Malif sighs. “Can we try to avoid a zombie army battle in the streets of LA?”
[5:28:16 PM] Mike: “Yeah, when I said that I had 12 zombies at my call… the old man took em away. I’m left with only 3 that I raised back at the compound.”
[5:28:37 PM] Victor: *Victor sighs and looks around.* “Harry…can i get you to come with me real quick private conversation. Athlete to punching bag”
[5:28:55 PM] ST: Ja-Cuze nods at Harry. “Yeah, sure, if that ever happens.”
[5:29:10 PM] Mike: Mike grins sheepishly. Too easy. “Which one of you’s the punching bag?”
[5:29:32 PM] ST: “So we done talking now? Can I get back to rehearsal?”
[5:30:05 PM] Victor: *Victor glares at mike* “The one that can take weeks of your punches, and when you’re tired back hand you back to san fransisco….that one…”
[5:30:28 PM] Malif: "I think that covers it mostly for now. But just so we know how guarded we need to be, does your band know about your true nature? "
[5:30:36 PM] Mike: Mike, still grinning sheepishly, “So that’d be…”
[5:30:58 PM] Victor: *Victors fist clinches tightly*
[5:31:13 PM] Harry: Harry does step aside to talk to Victor. “Shoot.”
[5:31:50 PM] Victor: *Victor shakes his head and continues to walk outside of ear shot of those with awesome ears.*
[5:32:07 PM] Mike: Mike laughs a bit. “I’m only messing around.” He then lets Harry and Victor step aside. He looks at Ja-Cuze. “You still haven’t heard us play one of our created songs…”
[5:32:20 PM] Harry: Harry follows.
[5:35:26 PM] ST: “No, they don’t, and I’d appreciate it if it didn’t get out. They’re already calling me Miss Cruz all the time, I don’t need them worshiping me or some shit like that.” Ja-Cuze looks to Mike. “That’s right. Go for it, then.” She motions to the stage.
[5:35:54 PM] Malif: “Of course, that’s why I’m asking. Same goes for Mike’s band.”
[5:36:15 PM] Mike: Mike nods and heads back to the stage, looking at the other members of his band. “You guys good to try again?”
[5:36:37 PM] Malif: Malif smiles and nods, and heads back out to listen to the practice.
[5:38:57 PM] ST: “Hold up.” Mark takes Mike aside. “What the fuck was that private conference all about, and why weren’t we invited?” He crosses his arms.
[5:39:33 PM] Mike: Mike grimaces. “Do you want the answer truthfully? Because it kinda goes against what we promised before.”
[5:40:52 PM] ST: “Dude, we made a promise before that, and it was that we wouldn’t let fame get to our heads. Looks to me like you’re being all fuckin’ buddy-buddy with the all-stars and leaving us little folk behind.”
[5:42:10 PM] Mike: Mike sighs. “I didn’t want to tell you before because it wasn’t supposed to concern you… this shit’s a bit beyond your guys’ paygrade… and I’m not even getting paid for it…” He gives Mark a serious look. “Do you want me to mention what we talked about over the phone?”
[5:44:27 PM] ST: Mark crosses his arms. “How long have we been best friends? I’m with you, dude, paygrade or no paygrade. And Jeff and Abel have stuck with us a while too. Don’t you think they deserve to know?” He hesitates. “Wait, what’s that got to do with your little meeting over there?”
[5:45:37 PM] Mike: “It’s got everything to do with that little meeting.” He looks over at Abel and Jeff. “Guys. Group meeting. We got shit to discuss.”
[5:45:55 PM] Malif: Malif watches Mike lead his band away, and sighs with relief.
[5:48:31 PM] ST: Abel and Jeff walk over, an inquisitive look on Abel’s face.
“Is this about which one of us gets to fuck Ja-Cuze first? If so, I call dibs,” says Jeff.
[5:48:46 PM] Malif: lol
[5:49:59 PM] Mike: “Jeff, stop thinking with your dick. Seriously. Probably why you lost a string. Kidding.” He said that before Jeff could get angry. He looks around to make sure there weren’t other mortals within earshot.
[5:50:51 PM] ST: The stage is clear for now.
[5:51:10 PM] Malif: Malif wanders towards the back seats in the audition hall, and answers his phone.
[5:52:19 PM] Mike: Mike makes sure the microphone is turned off and starts talking to the guys. “Alright… Mark already knows what I’m about to tell you, but I wanted to tell you guys myself.” He takes a deep breath, releasing it fluidly. “No real way to ease into this shit, so I’m just gonna say it. I’m the son of a God.”
[5:52:59 PM] Victor: *Victor walks back in to the stage area*
[5:53:05 PM] Harry: Harry and Victor approach. “Mike filling in the mortals?”
[5:53:39 PM] ST: Abel gives Mike a very doubtful look. Jeff barks a laugh. “You aren’t Jesus. Jesus was black.”
[5:54:28 PM] Mike: “And so is my dad. And I’m not talking about the Christian God. There’s other Gods out there of different religions and faiths. My dad happens to be of The Loa. Do you guys remember Old Man Saturday?”
[5:56:33 PM] ST: Mark just remains silent. Abel does too, but that’s a given.
“That weird-ass motherfucker? Yeah, sure I remember him,” says Jeff.
[5:57:09 PM] Mike: “His real name is Baron Samedi. He’s of the Loa. A God of Death and parties.” He sighs. “And I’m his son.”
[6:02:09 PM] ST: Abel crosses his arms. Mark runs a hand through his hair.
Jeff, on the other hand, says, “Wait, did you just say you’re part black?”
[6:02:32 PM] Malif: Malif’s eyes go wide at the back of the room as he grins into his phone.
[6:02:36 PM] Mike: Mike shrugs. “Apparently, I am.”
[6:08:33 PM] ST: “Nah dude, you’re like the whitest fucker I know. ’Cept Marky boy here.” He pauses. “But seriously. I’m calling dibs on Ja-Cuze. For real. I hate sloppy seconds.”
[6:09:14 PM] Mike: Mike sighs. “Do I have to prove it? Because my dad kinda gave me some epic powers.”
[6:13:39 PM] ST: Finally Mark speaks up. “Yes. You do.” Abel nods in agreement.
“What’s the hold up?” calls Ja-Cuze from the back.
[6:14:21 PM] Malif: uh oh XD
[6:15:08 PM] Mike: Mike turns on the microphone and speaks into it. “We’ll be right back, actually. Got something that needs to be taken care of. You can have the stage.” He sets the microphone back on the stand. “Let’s go, guys. I’d rather not show it off right here…”
[6:15:17 PM] Mike: He’d lead them outside somewhere.
[6:15:59 PM] Malif: O_O
[6:16:14 PM] Malif: (Dont you effing dare XD )
[6:16:27 PM] Victor: Mike the agent of our demise
[6:16:29 PM] Victor: lol
[6:16:37 PM] Mike: ((It’s either that, or I take control of one of their bodies.))
[6:16:59 PM] Malif: (Thats a good idea actually, do it indoors though XD )
[6:17:11 PM] ST: (( Okay, calling it there. ))
*Malif’s Phone Call*
[5:45:06 PM] ST: Your phone rings.
[5:46:03 PM] Malif: Check the call ID.
[5:50:13 PM] ST: It’s Angela.
[5:51:14 PM] Malif: “Hello?”
[5:51:59 PM] ST: “Doctor Strange! It’s Delphi. I did some digging for you on Tunante.”
[5:52:23 PM] ST: “Hey, get it? Delphi?”
[5:53:30 PM] Malif: Malif chuckles. “The Oracle of! Indeed! Whatcha got?”
[5:58:46 PM] ST: “Hah! Yeah, okay, here’s what I got:” The sound of knuckles cracking can be heard through the other end. “This Tunante guy? His real name’s Miguel Guerrero. He’s got a home in Beverly Hills, and he drives a white 1982 Pontiac Firebird.”
[6:00:43 PM] Malif: “Woah, that’s some quality intel! We’ve found out he’s got a cop named Lt Romero in his pocket, too, and that guy’s watching her like a hawk.”
[6:01:08 PM] Malif: “Maybe we can manage to mess with both of them, now…”
[6:05:49 PM] ST: “Wait, there’s a little more. He’s got a wife, six pit bulls, all of which are rescued, and a son and a daughter. And… based on a little deductive reasoning… apparently he makes anonymous donations regularly to the local pet shelters. This guy’s normal life is nuts.”
[6:07:23 PM] Malif: “Wow, that’s quite a pile of alibis. Still, I wouldn’t want to be the child of a monster like him, so his family might be better off if we can gently remove him. Though, I want to know more about these killings he’s been masterminding around here. Or do you think someone might be framing him? Any other Aztlani around here?”
[6:12:05 PM | Edited 6:14:10 PM] ST: “Not that I know of, aside from Ja-Cuze.” Angela pauses. “And, according to Mr. X, the correct term is ‘Teotl.’ Apparently ‘Atzlanti’ is kind of a… diminutive, I guess? Anyway, it’s improper.”
[6:14:08 PM] Malif: “Oh, I know. I was being rude to our murderous target. I didn’t know X could hear me, my apologies! Anyway, see if you can discover if anyone might be setting him up somehow, any Titan related activities in town, and such like. Also, a pattern of Tunante’s activities, is he only sacrificing harmful gangsters, or innocents too?”
[6:16:24 PM] ST: “Oh, he’s not around, I just used the term around him before and he was quick to correct me.” Again Angela pauses. “I’ll see what I can find!” The clacking of keys comes through the other end.
[6:18:50 PM] ST: “Call you back when I find something!” With that she hangs up.
*Victor’s Meeting With Harry*
[8:33:12 PM] Victor: “Something doesnt seem right sports star.”
[8:33:22 PM] Victor: “Shes too laid back.”
[8:34:26 PM] Harry: “Yeah, she’s overconfident. Not a shocker in our line of work. We’ll see whether Fate lets her be right. Not bloody likely.”
[8:35:44 PM] Victor: “No its beyond that. She knows something, something she dont want us to know. Shes putting this off…Either she agreed to have us here as a meat shield….or a distraction for her to do what ever it is she doesnt want us to know she’s gonna do.”
[8:36:31 PM] Victor: “And i dont know about you but after the ninja fiasco where your sister almost died…Im not in the mood for surprises.”
[8:41:18 PM] Harry: “Then keep your eyes open, and let me know when things look ripe to pop off, and for fuck’s sake, keep the power use to bare minimum. The more we use our powers in a place, the worse we attract…negative attention.”
[8:43:58 PM] Victor: I know all about fate Sports star…Its been fucking with me since day one…But im not going to let it deter me. I do what I do, And you do what you do. Your the protector of this band of misfits. But know this if I see an opportunity to act I will not wait by asking your permission. I just want you aware I’m backing whatever little plan you cook up. As long as it works. I just dont want this little girl playing us for fools either.
[8:46:00 PM] Harry: “I’m not telling you to wait for permission. I mean warn us if you see things coming to a head.”
[8:46:48 PM] Victor: *nods* "Just keep your twinkle toes ready. An army of gangster zombies…Your speed may be the only thing to get some of these people out of here.
[8:47:56 PM] Harry: “Planning to. I have the feeling I’m gonna end up testing that golden armored form at this rate.”
[8:49:59 PM] Victor: “Not sure what the hell that means but With Athen having my Bracers I dont feel all there, so Heres counting on you.” *Victor pats him the on the back hard, hard enough to break a mortals spine but only hard enough to nudge harry forward a bit.*
[8:51:10 PM] Victor: “Lets get back in there before Mike, says something and we have another scion pissed at us. Or believes in the remake of the Ring again.”
[8:51:44 PM] Harry: “That thing where I turned gold last time? I think it’s a kind of armor. And before this week is over, I’m probably going to have to leap in front of a bullet.”
[8:52:24 PM] Harry: He nods. “Good to see you got that before out of your system and came back to help. Glad to have you.”
[8:53:14 PM] Victor: *Chuckles as he begins to walk.* “Bullets hurt the first time, leaves a nasty bruise when not expecting them. Just fair warning….Then again…. * Looks back at Harry * … Maybe thats just me.”