Who can it be now? – BC.

Scene setting – The Peach Cafe : BC.

co-written with Gene.

Gene:  

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Armed robbery leads to murder of cop . The title of the article had been stamped onto the page, its black font taking up at least ¼ of the page. To someone like Ava, it was certainly eye catching. Who didn’t love reading articles regarding murder and theft? Upon viewing the front page, which had too much exposure regarding a woman’s body, she instantly turned the paper – with some difficulty due to the size – and settled her eyes upon the crime-related article. There was plenty of gossip in the papers which were delivered to the Vestro District and not enough reality. Her attention fixated on the first paragraph, reading it then proceeding to re-read it, to let the contents sink in. Thankfully, the article was written in a neutral tone; the amount of bias in some newspapers was truly horrifying. Ava was entirely oblivious to her surroundings, though she occasionally took a sip of her drink.

“You’d find much more interesting reading material at the library, Miss.”

Her head raised upon hearing the man speak. She hadn’t anticipated that anyone would talk to her. Ava turned, looking for the one who spoke; however, he was already walking away to his booth. She opened her mouth to say something, but froze. As the man sat down, Ava peered at his features. It popped into her mind, that she knew him. From where? Ava was still figuring that part out. The man was attractive, but it was clear he was too old for Ava – not that she’d attempt anything anyway. Upon realizing she was being way too obvious as she observed the man, Ava quickly turned and looked back to her newspaper.

As if her mind were a cemetery, and the man a ghost, the fact that he was recognizable continued to haunt her mind. It was rare times like these, when Ava couldn’t place her finger on something, which she hated. Though, the state of mind only ever occurred to Ava when she was trying to remember a spell.

He was a teacher at her school. Her eyelids came together, and the sudden blackness obscuring her view was enough for her to recall the past. Martin, his name was, however Ava would have to refer to him as Mr Martin. Even though Ava wasn’t in any of his classes, nonetheless she remembered seeing him around school and hearing some chatter about him; all teachers were talked about at her school, something Ava never really liked to divulge in. Whenever hearing gossip or inadvertently being present whilst one was going on, she never liked to participate; it was clear if people could gossip about anyone, they’d certainly gossip about you.

Should she go say hi? Ava was unsure whether the teacher recognized her, or not. It was always peculiar to see teachers out of school; what was one meant to say? Address them as Sir/Miss or call them by their first names? What would you talk about? All these questions shrouded her mind. After around 5 minutes of debating what to do, Ava finally gained the courage and left her seat. As she headed over to the booth, nerves prickled her skin, yet her expression remained calm. Whilst it would have been a few seconds until Ava reached the booth, it felt as if minutes had gone by.

“I just wanted to say hi,” Ava smiled, her voice not betraying her jitters. “May I sit?” If the man said yes, Ava would proceed to slide into the booth, opposite him. However, if he said no, Ava would turn away and walk back to her seat, her cheeks reddening with embarrassment. If she had been granted permission, Ava would say, “I go to the Acalo school; I’m not sure if you know me,”

Razorbackwriter:  

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The background sounds merged into a light gaggle of chatting voices, with the hiss of the coffee machine and the steady beat of popular music that filtered through the wall mounted sound system. It was enough to make it easy to mull over the days events. Joel had been searching for the book in his possession for some time, and now that he had the opportunity in the privacy of the cafe booth, he planned to start his studies, over a quiet coffee and muffin. The script on the opened pages was one that he had learnt back in his youth. A kindly old man who lived above his parent’s apartment often gave him private lessons to help bolster his studies. Joel’s mind was cast back to the dimly lit room that smelt strongly of tobacco and mould.

“Persistence in your studies will lead you on a path to great wisdom.” The voice was now a ghost that often spoke to Joel in his dreams. Amazing how this man’s teachings had a profound affect upon Joel and now the day had come where he would use this knowledge to help him unlock what had been up until now a mystery. Joel wet his lips in anticipation, as he took out a small black leather book that was bound with a red ribbon. He picked at the fray edges and started to untie it – only to be interrupted by the clink of a coffee cup in a saucer, that was being set down on his table.

“Your coffee and muffin, Sir.” The young fresh face barista set down his cup and the small plate which had a warm muffin on top. This mild interruption had Joel pause, whilst the girl waited to see if there was anything else that Joel wanted.“Thank you.” His reply was curt, eyes narrowing as he waited for the girl to leave the table. He hated people that hovered over him. Unbeknownst to Joel, the girl found him attractive. She teetered on the spot and then smoothed out her frilly skirt with her hands. “Heh.” A little giggle escaping her lips. Perhaps she was used to being told how pretty she was. There was no mistaking that she was, but Joel wasn’t in the least bit attracted – or in the mood. Rolling his eyes, he reached for the UNO card and then handed it to the girl with a gruff rumble in his voice.

“Thank you.” Maybe now she got the message. The young waitress blinked back to reality. He really wasn’t interested in her. A small pout appeared and she turned on her toes and sped back to the counter – her cheeks aflame.

Now that he was alone once more, the young teacher picked up his coffee cup and proceeded to blow on the top of the froth. The heart shaped pattern started to blur, and Joel then took a small sip – only to hear another voice. What the hell was with women today? Joel’s eyebrows both piqued, his head turning slightly to see who it was.

“I just wanted to say hi,”

It was the young woman who had been reading the sad excuse for a newspaper. Joel set his coffee cup down in it’s saucer, and stared at the girl wordlessly. The pause was interrupted by the fair haired girl asking if she could sit. Joel would be the first to admit, that the girl was way too young for him. Horrid thoughts started to filter through his mind until her face jolted a memory from the Acalo school. SHE WAS A STUDENT. Joel’s eyes closed as he raised two fingers to pinch the bridge of his nose. He realized that this was of course his fault. He HAD to go and make that remark about the newspaper. Letting out a sigh of resignation, Joel gestured with his hand towards the empty seat in the booth. Again, his tendencies towards being a gentleman rose to the fore. Staring at the girl through pale blue lenses, he listened to the girl introduce herself – though not by name.

“I go to the Acalo school; I’m not sure if you know me,” The girl’s cheeks were now a deep shade of red. Joel took this as embarrassment at being so bold to approach a teacher in a public place. Slowly, Joel closed the weathered old book in front of him and then pushed it aside with the brush of his hand. He then reached for his small black book and dropped it back in his bag. The girl was known to him. From one of the more influential families. It was easy to tell by the way that she dressed, so unlike the girls where he lived. Amazing the differences in style to those that could afford it and those who couldn’t. Finally, Joel decided to speak.

“Of course, Miss Blackbane.” Yes, he did know her name. Joel’s glasses slid gently down the bridge of his nose allowing the haunting grey of his eyes to be seen. Dark pupils dilated momentarily as he observed the girl. She wasn’t just a pretty young thing, but she was exquisite. Unique in fact. “We have crossed paths on occasion at the school, but as yet you are in none of my classes.” The young teacher idly tore off a piece of his blueberry muffin and then popped it into his mouth. This whole scenario was unusual. A teacher having coffee with a student and one that he did not have in his class, would make gossip mongers salivate. Joel eased himself back into the leather of the booth seat and remained calm and in control. Now it was his turn to be inquisitive.

“I imagined a girl like you would travel in a pack.” Insinuating that she was the type of girl that had a close knit circle of friends. Odd how girls liked to do that. Joel had always been a loner often enjoying his own company. Joel’s lips carried the ghost of a smile as he waited to see how she would react. He absently drummed his long fingers on the wood of the table as he waited for her to speak.

~RB~

Ambition is not a dirty word – SS.

Scene setting : Greed Castle

co-written with Dessy.

 

Dessy:  Mariela tilted her head as Lydia stepped back and seemed genuinely nervous. She wasn’t going to run off and leave. Or, at least not right now. She can’t promise that she won’t run away later. But for right now, she was staying. “I kind of figured that part out. He’s like, the ruler or something.” she said, folding her hands in front of her. She then gave a smile at the mention of being Duchess. “Duchess? That sounds.. wonderful.”she gave a nod, giving a light blush and shaking her head at the boy comment. She allowed Lydia to link their arms once more, and when they walked past the body of Warner, she looked away and tried not to look at it. It was a horrible sight. She looked at Lydia when she mentioned about a masked ball, pursing her lips. “A masked ball would be really fun.” she gave a nod of approval. She then laughed at making Hell a happy place. “This is Hell, Lydia.. It’s never going to be a happy place.” she spoke, getting kind of used to the idea of being in Hell. Of course, she still didn’t think she belonged here, but she’d get used to it overtime. “Yes. We’re still besties.” Mariela said with a small giggle afterwards.

 

Razorbackwriter:  It was like watching two young girls recommit to their friendship with the excitement of the coming events that would bring new life to the Castle Greed at was sure to be a dark time following the War of Wrath. Lucifer had almost made certain on Lydia’s assumption that Mammon, the Prince of Greed would fall. The armor; Beserker was a true double edged sword. While one wore it, they had the most amazing powers of strength, and resilience in battle. However the down side was that the armor slowly drives the wearer to insanity. Even the greatest minds become putty, just as they believe the battle is won.

With Lydia guiding Mariela throughout the Main hall, she could only smile and giggle at Mariela’s excitement at the prospect of not only becoming a Duchess of Greed in the coming days, but also the thought of a masked ball being held. One that welcomed all players in the current war at Wrath – even the one that had started all this. Gabriel. As Lydia bat her eyelashes and was comical in her witty statements, there was something hidden. Something going on, that she was not allowing Mariela privy to. The last thing she wanted to do, was upset the poor girl further after what had been a terrible murder in the Main hall. Now that Warner’s body had been whisked away and the blood from the summons cleaned, there would be plans set in place to ready the Main hall for the coming change of leadership.

With a quickness in her step, Lydia took Mariela up to what would be her room. A grand room that had the most exotic and rich furnishings a girl could ever hope or dream for. It was grand and fitting to a noble. One that Mariela was to become if Lydia had any say in the matter. With Lucifer’s approval of course. A servant opened the door and Lydia let out a squeal as she led the girl inside.

“Now this….is you.” Lydia gushed, as she extended her arms and welcomed Mariela into the room. It was fit for a Queen, no less. Satin bed covers and all so delicately stitched with patterns that were of swirls and fantastic creatures, along with flowers and pretty birds. “I would expect no less from the Castle of Greed, but to have the very best for it’s guests.”Lydia waited a moment to gauge Mariela’s reaction, while wiggling her eyebrows as she pointed at the walk in closet. It in itself was like a room of its own. Racks of gowns, shoes, accessories, hats…everything a girl could want.

“I’ll let you get used to your new surrounds. I know the time is late, and you must also wish some rest. I promise to return first thing in the morning. Just one thing I need to do before bed myself.” That said, she would kiss Mariela on the cheek, before swanning out of the room, her skirts making a light hush sound as they crossed the carpeted floor.

With Mariela safe in her own room, Lydia took the moment to go and see the continuing war that was raging across the lands at Wrath. She could see it easily from the rooftops. Smell the scent of death that was constantly on the winds. Change was coming to Hell. Standing proudly upon the high wall, with guards in behind her, Lydia raised her head. For her, this was her greatest moment. Without having to even lift a weapon, or raise a blade, she was a certain for the crown of Greed. And all because a woman in Wrath decided to end her lover’s life. Lydia’s scandalous report to Mammon, about what she had heard from two strangers in the park had set the ball rolling. Far from the lands of Greed, few would know apart from Lucifer himself, that all this….madness and mayhem had been orchestrated by the most devious of Demons in Hell.

Ambition.

“Intelligence without ambition is a bird without wings.” 

“Enjoying the battle, Lydia?” The voice came from behind her, and it was the Blacksmith – Suda. The same old dwarf that had shown Mammon the suit of armor called Beserker. The same suit that Lydia had called a tin can. Lydia wobbled her head from side to side, then took out a bag of sweets from her pocket and popped one in her mouth, before then shaking the bag and offering it to Suda. “Sweety?” Lydia said with a chuckle as she then sucked the sweet goodness of the boiled lolly. Suda looked at the bag and then turned up his nose. “My mammy always taught me, never accept lollies from bigguns.” Lydia nearly choked on her lolly as she tried to hold back a laugh. “Cute.”

The Dwarf folded his arms as he stared over at the raging battlefields, where the cries and roars of those fighting was still going on. “So…the castle is buzzing. Warner is dead. Lucifer came to visit…..and now…you are playing your ace.” The Dwarf let out a sigh, and shook his head. “If only Mammon knew it was YOU that had me put that armor on display. How long were you going to wait for an opportunity to see him want to go to war with someone?”

So that was it. Lydia had plotted behind Mammon’s back, and with the right slice of gossip about Wrath had caused him to want to suit up.

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“Turns out….I didn’t have to wait long at all.” Lydia tossed the Blacksmith a bag of gold which he caught with a startled expression. Without even looking at him, Lydia said. “Ambition is not a dirty word. Piss on compromise. Go for the throat.”

Her grin now was starting to show, and it was simply devious. Yes, she was a beauty, there was no mistaking it. But beneath the lace and finery…..she was a complete bitch.

 

~RB~

 

The Police – Can’t stand losing

 

This week’s pick for my favorite song in the car is by the Police.  A 70’s classic with a real reggae sound to it.  Boy, it’s great for singing along too.

I’ve called you so many times today
And I guess it’s all true what your girl-friends say
That you don’t ever want to see me again
And your brother’s gonna kill me and he’s six feet ten

I guess you’d call it cowardice
But I’m not prepared to go on like this

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t, stand losing you
I can’t

I can’t stand losing you
I can’t stand losing you
I can’t stand losing you

I see you sent my letters back
And my L.P. records and they’re all scratched
I can’t see the point in another day
When nobody listens to a word I say

You can call it lack of confidence
But to carry on living doesn’t make no sense

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing

I guess this is our last goodbye
And you don’t care, so I won’t cry
And you’ll be sorry when I’m dead
And all this guilt will be on your head

I guess you’d call it suicide
But I’m too full to swallow my pride

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing
I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand losing

I can’t, I can’t, I can’t stand
Can’t stand losing you

 

 

Every little thing she does is magic – SS.

 

Scene setting : Greed Castle.

co-written with Dessy.

 

Dessy:  Mariela watched a man run of the room, addressing Lydia immediately. At the mention of a bookstore, she tilted her head to the side out of curiosity. From the way the Prince yelled for him to shut up.. he obviously didn’t want to talk about it. Mariela watched the entire thing, a bit amused at the conversation and at how angry the Prince was getting. He moved closer to her while Lydia giggled in the background, and gave her his permission to heal him. “Yes. It’s Marie.” she answered, following him as he took off his shirt and the bruise was exposed. She could see he had popped it back in place, which he shouldn’t have done. “You would be in a lot less pain if you left it alone and didn’t try to pop it back in place..” she said, but had pulled out a bottle in the process and some cloth. The liquid was clear, like water, and it was – sort of. Mariela had took one of the herbs she had found, crushed it and put it into the water, making it more magical. Many benefits of being a witch is she could make potions other people couldn’t – as well as use some magic. She poured some on the cloth, and then placed the cloth on his bruised shoulder, but tried not to put too much pressure as to not cause him anymore pain. She could hear Lydia laughing, and wondered what they were talking about – but didn’t ask anymore questions. After a few minutes, she held her hand over the cloth and a white light appeared. She used healing magic to heal it faster. She kept her hand hovering over the bruised shoulder as she removed the cloth, and the light began healing the bruised shoulder.

 

Razorbackwriter:  The Prince quirked a brow at this girl, Marie. Fancy telling him that he should not have tried to pop it back into place. At the time it seemed to be the right thing to do, though it was extremely painful. “If I had left it alone, my arm would be hanging down around my buttocks.” The Prince replied, letting out a silent “Ow” as she pressed her hand with the cloth to his bruised shoulder. By all accounts, it did feel a bit better and he was grateful for the girl’s attentions. “So, you are…a healer are you?” Mammon gathered as much by the way she used the liquid that liked like water but had magical properties. “I could use someone like you on staff.” This was a fair call, especially with the types that were lurking around town and blasting people with aether. Mammon still didn’t know what to make of that pair at the bookstore. All he knew was he would get his revenge, one way or another.

Lydia’s laughter did manage to reach the Prince’s ears and he didn’t like it one bit.

“When you are quite finished with your little knitting circle, Lydia, I do believe you wanted to see me on a matter of importance.”

Lydia coughed and then straightened her dress, smoothing out the creases as she came back into the Main hall where Marie was administering her healing magic on the Prince. Lydia smiled brightly as she knew that this news was scandalous and a tad dangerous. She even started to wonder how the Prince of Greed would take it.

“I was travelling through the park when I picked up a young couple that looked like they could use some assistance.”Lydia pulled up a chair near the Prince and then leaned close so that he could hear her better. “Turns out they were witness to a battle.” The Prince started to sit upright, and wondered if the ones involved were the same ones he encountered. “Go on.”

“The Prince of Wrath…Belial, was fighting Gabriel.” Lydia said in a hushed tone, chewing her bottom lip as she watched the Prince of Greed carefully. The Prince rubbed his chin. “Always knew that lot loved blood sports. Anyways…who won?” He naturally assumed Belial, but how wrong he was.

“Gabriel…beheaded Belial and…she did it easily.”

Mammon’s jaw fell open. That couldn’t be right. Not Belial surely. He was the goddamn Prince of Wrath…he was all about killing. With what had happened at the bookstore, now this – there was a definite shift in the balance of power, and not only that she would have taken the Throne of Wrath as well. The Prince slowly rose to his feet, and handed Marie her cloth that she had been pressing to his shoulder, which was feeling much better.

“If she is taking on the Princes of Hell, she may seek to want to rule Hell herself. That sly bitch.” The Prince marched out of the hall shouting. “Get me my blacksmith. I am going to need the very best suit of armor and sword that has ever been made. I won’t sit around like a duck on a pond waiting to be attacked by the likes of Gabriel. Warner!…Get me the blacksmith!”

Lydia quickly rose to standing then went to put her arm around Marie. “That went well, Marie. See, now your part of the family. He just doesn’t say thank you often.”

As the two women were left behind in the Main hall, the Prince was on his way down to the black smith shop to see what magic the blacksmith could do for him. There was no way he was venturing out of his castle, unless he was prepared.

 

~RB~