Jul. 11th, 2014

masterofgunfu: (Default)
"It's a big responsibility," I told the little girl as we watched the little balls of fur and feathers tear at the jerky I had passed over. "If you don't train them right, I'll have to come back and take care of it. I wouldn't want to, but it's my job. People deserve to be safe."

"I promise!" Evie replied with eyes nearly brimming with tears.

Things had been quiet for nearly two months after the flare of magic and the near destruction of Atlanta by the Irish sea demons. Magic had faded, leaving technology dominate around the clock. Cars worked, radios played, and TV stations were actually able to broadcast for more than a few hours. Heck, two nights ago they even played Terminator 2, proving that things really could be worse than the world we lived in. Then a magic wave hit and things were back to normal…well, what amounts to normal in this post-shift world. The first 18 hours after the return of magic waves, things were chaotic and so the Order was in high gear; cleaning up after all the magic left behind. I was kept in the armory, handing out weapons and ammo to the knights who were out making a real difference in the world.

Now it was the day after the first magic wave and the Knight-Protector, my boss, decided I could finally go home. Have I mentioned how much I love my job? Okay, I do love my jobif I would be allowed to do itit's just my boss I could do without.

Anyway, on my way home, I came across the residents of an apartment complex searching for a little girl who had disappeared a few hours ago. Funny how when the world goes to shit, we're back to the village raising, caring, and protecting the child. Yes, there were still assholes in the world but there were also a lot of good people and good communities.

I, being a decent person and a knight of the Order, immediately joined in the hunt and even managed to find the girl. She had found a gryphon nest with two nestlings and their mother shot. At least the nestlings were old enough to tear off and chew their own meat. The knight in me knew this was a bad idea. Gryphons are classified as dangerous but then again so were pitt bull terriers, once, and everyone knows it's how you raise them that defines if they become a danger or not. So I decided to give the girl and the gryphons a chance.

"OK, and I'll help you when I can. I live just down the street anyway, so I'll be checking on you. Got it?"

"I got it," she replied in a tone that sent the nestlings squealing as she leap up and hugged my legs. I froze, both in surprise and uncertainty, before I rubbed her head. That's what you do when kids hug you right?
masterofgunfu: (A-Yes keep talking)
[OOC: All dialog and situations taken from Magic Strikes. I've merely switched the POV from Kate to Andrea.]

It was Friday lunch and I could tell something was bothering Kate. We'd been having lunch every Friday afternoon since Kate not only saved my life but kept my secret. She had her own secrets, some of which I could almost guess the nature of, so we were kind of keeping each other's secrets, but she didn't have to save me when she did and so I decided we needed to know each other better. Plus, what friendship isn't made from shared secrets. True, those secrets were usually shared between the friends but I didn't really care. I needed a friend and from what I could see, Kate didn't have anyone either. So I made Friday lunches a thing.

"The Midnight Games," she said finally.

I finishing chewing my gyros as I thought of all I knew about them. "One of my mentors was in it. The Games are held in the Arena, a bunker of some kind. It's run by the House, which always consists of seven members. They make most of their money off betting on fighters. There are individual bouts, but the big banana is their team tournament. It's held once a year. Fourteen teams participate. Each team consists of seven fighters, all with specific roles."

"They enjoy the number seven, don't they?" Kate quipped and took a bite of tzatziki laden gyros. I tried to think of what the roles were.

"My mentor fought as a shoote…" I started to say before I caught sight of the tall man with dark hair lounging across the street. Raphael. Damn. I had been avoiding him. He was bad news, plain and simple. He had 'bad-boy-let-me-make-trouble-for-you' eyes and just being near him was unsettling. He made me want things I couldn't have. The simple fact was, I was a mess. I was held together by stubbornness, duck tape, and not a whole lot else. And he had a way of pulling that apart. "Can you believe it? I think he's stalking me," I said with a hiss.

Kate, my BFF and greatest ally, waved him over.

"What are you doing?!?" I asked, hoping the hint of panic I heard in my voice wasn't noticeable.

"I want to find out if he knows anything about the Midnight Games. He'll tell me anything if you let him sit with us. I think he really likes you."

"Yeah," I said with scorn. What was this, middle school?

"You really don't like him?" Kate asked confused.

That was the trouble. I did like him. Badly. "I don't want to be his TWT-IHFB."

"What does that mean?"

"That Weird Thing I Haven't Fucked Before."

Kate choked on her gyros at that, which served her right. Then Raphael showed up and I had to focus. I could do this. I was trained in interrogation techniques. "Hello. Andrea. Kate. Didn't expect to see you here."

Oh, so smooth. "Sit down," I hissed and he did so, perching on the edge of the seat and setting the heavy backpack beside him.

We sat there like that for a few moments before Kate asked, "What's in the backpack?"

"Portable m-scanner," Raphael said. "Picked it up from the shop. Been in there ever since the flarethey couldn't test to see if it worked until a magic wave hit."

He sounded tired and unsure of himself as he spoke. It made me want to hold his hand and tell him it'd be okay. I hit that thought in the solar plexus and stood before anymore like it decided to show. "I'm going to get desert. Kate, you want anything?"

"No," she said.

"You?" I nearly barked at Raphael.

"No." He answered so I spun on my heal and marched off. Downstairs at the restaurants counter I studied the desert menu and a wicked idea came to mind. So Kate wants information from him, eh? And he thinks he can handle me? Let's find out.

I climbed back upstairs carrying a milkshake and a bowl of peach slices, and was just in time to see Raphael shove a pen into his backpack and look shifty. Kate was looking rather focused as well, which made me glare at the pair of them. "Give," I heard her say, as I took my seat, Raphael replied, "The Midnight Games are forbidden. By the direct order of the Beast Lord, no member of the Pack may participate, aid, or bet on the Midnight Games."

"That's it? That's all you got?" Kate said. Raphael shrugged, so Kate gave me a pleading look. Game on.

I took a slice of peach and licked my lips slowly; seemingly oblivious to the pointed stare Raphael was now giving me. He, and any information he had, was mine. I bit into the slice of peach and licked my lips again. "How come they're forbidden? Is there a story behind it?"

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Andrea Maria Nash

August 2014

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