The First Age
Renovations - Printable Version

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- Hood - 08-05-2013

Hood hadn't survived as long as he had without being quick and alert. But the damn punk was a fast one. And, apparently, a stupid one. After everything else, she still tried to take a stab at it, and this time literally. He saw the movement, and some small part of his brain registered the weapon, which at first he assumed was a knife. Was this what the Atharim were about then? Glean what skills they could from him, have him set up a nice cozy safe house for them, then try to put him down like a dog?

His arm snapped down like a steel beam, forearm crashing against her wrist even as her weapon of choice bit into his side. It was a shallow cut, but would leave a nasty gash as he batted her attack aside, the stake cutting across the flesh of his side. In the same movement he stepped into her, the elbow of his other arm snapping out to catch her against the jaw once, then back again to drive his elbow into her collarbone.

The difference in height, and the fact that she was skilled enough to roll with the first blow meant that he didn't crush her collarbone like had had planned, instead just glancing his elbow against her chest. He stepped into her again, body checking her against the weapons cage behind her before spinning on Aria, ready to strike and expecting her to have pulled a weapon on him as well. He would have preferred finishing the pink-haired runt off first, but with two opponents in such close quarter, he couldn't spare the time.

Which was probably the best thing for Rune, since it meant she wasn't dead.

- Aria - 08-06-2013

Aria waited the mere moments it took for the stake to affect the body. Nothing happened. Aria was thankful but she was also a bit concerned about the reaction. Mr. White took the offensive and Rune was going to be sore for their hunt.

When Mr. White rounded on her Aria rose her hands above her head. She wasn't going to take up arms against him. He was human. Aria didn't smile even though she wanted to disarm him his attitude. Instead she spoke in a soft voice through the emptiness that was still present, for which Aria was very thankful for. "I've nothing against you. You're human." Aria nodded to the cut on his arm. "That proves it." Aria frowned, "I know she deserves whatever you want to dish out. Your home, your rules. I get it. But we have monsters to hunt. Monsters that are killing our friends and family in the Atharim. And they are killing and raping civilians for the pure pleasure of it." Aria shook her head, "I've no idea why one is wanted alive. I'd be happy if they all died. But you, me and her have to work together, or this is going to go down badly."

Aria smiled, "I'm leaving now." Aria turned to Rune, "I'd tell him what you were thinking and maybe he won't kill you." Aria turned around and went back up through the trap door. She fought ever last bit of wanting to shut the trap door on them and make them work it out. She only hoped that they would stop.

Aria went back to her cot and started rolling through her research again. Even if Rune had her connection, Aria would continue looking until the monsters were dead on the off chance that Rune's connections were wrong. She doubted they were but one could never be too sure with monsters about.

- Rune - 08-06-2013

She knew she’d only get one shot, but it was a risk worth taking. She also knew just from the scuffle upstairs … which his shoving totally started by the way … that Hood knew what he was about, more than anyone she'd ever met before. Rune was quick and tough and stubborn, but she was also aware he might end up killing her over this. Hopefully, it would be up to Aria to take him out if evidence of a wefuke showed itself. Hopefully.

A crack of pain slammed her arm and easily deflected her blow aside, but not before the edge of the weapon ripped at his shirt. The priceless stake fell limply from her hand. Rune was focused on watching for the reaction, a sizzle and scream of otherworldly pain, and was unable to fully escape Hood’s lightning fast follow-up. She thankfully managed to dodge a bone crushing blow and took the brunt of it to the breastbone instead.

It knocked the wind clean out of her, and before she knew it, she was checked up against the locker she’d so amorously longed after earlier. The bang of the back of her skull against the metal vibrated her eardrums and she slumped to the floor. There was literally nothing she could do except keep the clarity to not resist him.

She gasped for breath, blinking over and over again, but she didn’t panic.

She heard Aria take her leave, but Rune remained seated on the floor, leaning against the locker. Not only was she too dizzy to get up at the moment Probably shouldn’t have gone for that third beer but she wanted to remain as nonthreatening as possible. She didn’t mind dying in the hunt, but at the hands of someone who took offense at her precautions, well that would just be frekkin’ rotten luck.

She gently rubbed her wrist where he made contact, and slowly went about testing to make sure nothing was broken. Though she’d broken a wrist before, she was pretty sure this one was going to be fine. ”Look, don’t take it personal, but she’s right. At least let me explain before you blow my brains out.”

She nodded at the dropped weapon. ”That’s called a ‘Kalku blessed stake’ … It’s carved from the soapbark tree of central Chile and engraved with commands in Huilliche … commands meant to control demon spirits called wefuke.” The hiss to her tone made it clear how Rune felt about those particular monsters.

She panted a few more cycles to steady the thudding in her chest. Speaking of.... she pulled the rounded collar of her tank off her chest to peer down beneath, just positive she was going to see a depression in her breastbone where he’d hit there too. Instead, it was just bright red, and she let the tank go and rubbed the skin gently there as well.

”You ain’t normal!” She exclaimed, eyes fierce with suspicion. ”I smell nothing on you! Not a whiff of violence or rage. The entire... whatever that was between us upstairs...” she flicked her eyes to the ceiling, ”...whatever that was, you were stone cold as a corpse. You move different. You talk different. There’s nothin’ but glass in your eyes. I had to make sure you weren’t possessed! I’ll be damned if I go out on the hunt with people who ain’t got my back. And I sure as shit ain’t willin' to die for no monster-possessed lost-cause should things get hot out there.”

She paused long enough to grunt and clutch at her chest again. The sharp prickle of before was easing into a long, low throbbing ache. Like the world’s worst heartburn.

She swallowed to grit her teeth and not show the weakness too much more than she already had, but Rune was smart enough to stay down. Hood could look at the stake if he wanted. There were foreign words carved into the handle, and the wood itself was filed to a clean edge. But it clearly wasn’t meant for stabbing, unless you wanted to really, really piss off whoever you stabbed with it. Or unless you got lucky and skewered an eyeball or something. ”Since you’re not smokin’ up like the wicked witch a the west drenched with holy water, you must be clean. So sue me.”

She licked her lips, perhaps the only indication of being nervous the entire time so far. But Rune knew she was in the right. If he killed her now out of pure retribution, she’d die without regrets. But if she did end up worm meal today, she was definitely going to haunt him forever.

”Like I said, I had to make sure.”

It didn’t even occur to her that he may find one particular phrase out of all that explanation somewhat odd... that she admitted smelling nothing on him.

- Hood - 08-06-2013

Aria's quick submission probably saved all of them a lot of hastle in the long run. Seeing her throw her hands in the air, Hood's defensive posture melted away, although he stepped out of reach of Rune, just in case she somehow found a second wind in those critical moments before Aria took her leave. Which left him alone with Rune. Hood stood in silence as Rune righted herself a bit and took stock, staring down at the damn woman. She had been nothing but trouble since her arrival. Every one of her little outbursts just seemed to reinforce his distrust of the Atharim; sure, what they did seemed to be good work, but bloody hell were they sloppy about how they went about it.

As she spoke, he nudged over a large metal ammo can, creating a loud bang and rattle, before sitting down on it to stare at her, with her well within his reach. She gave her schpeel as he studiously ignored the bleeding wound in his side. It was shallow, but there would probably be need of a stitch or five; he'd decide once this little problem was dealt with.

So she didn't trust him to be human, was that it? She thought he was some horrible monster. Probably not too far off the mark, by the more conventional concept of monster; he'd done some damningly terrible things in his time. Toppling third-wordl governments was rarely done without some innocent blood being spilt. Some of it by his own hands. Hereditary right to rule was such an annoying, messy thing which lead to entire family trees being cut down, and he wasn't the type to waste time finding the different between in-laws and third cousins.

If she didn't trust that he was human, it meant she didn't trust her higer-ups. They had sent her to him, after all, under orders to work wtih him. If she didn't trust them at their word, then maybe she wasn't a lost cause. Not just another brainwashed twit fanatic running around in the dark. Her penchance for pointy pieces of exotic wood and literature aside...he really didn't know if all that actually mattered one way or the other when it came to putting a 'wefuke' down. Considering he hadn't believed in actual monsters just a year ago, maybe magic wasn't so ridiculous.

"John Snow doesn't exist. Never did. Far as my parents know, I'm twelve years dead and burried. Watched my own funeral via satelite feed. Two days later, halo-jump into Botswana to put a couple CCD policy-makers six feet under. 14 months ago, my team and I were in Oman. Ran afoul of five Ghul. They killed my team, and I killed them. Atharim found me the next morning."
As with everything else about him, there wasn't much emotion to it all; statement of fact, a bit of give-and-take so she'd hopefully stop trying to prove she had the bigger balls. "I'm getting tired of having to hit you. Get your act together, drop the chip on your shoulder, and calm the fuck down. Catch more flies with honey, as they say. Want me to watch your back, stop making me have to waste all my time watching mine."

He stood up then and moved over to a first-aid kit on one of the counters, pulling his shirt off to expose the shallow cut, using a mirror from the kit to get a better look at it. He could probably skip the stitches. As could be expected, he had a few scars to show off, and an impressive build. Spots on his shoulder and back where the skin had been rubbed raw from his bodyarmor so often that it had scarred over, the occasional cut, probably from shrapnel, but nothing was serious or even all that noteworthy. Apparently just many near-misses. "You start drinking something other then horse piss, maybe we can sit down some time and I'll show you a thing or two. Ice packs in the freezer upstairs. Sun down in two hours, might want to catch a nap."

- Rune - 08-06-2013

She didn’t quite relax, but as Hood didn’t spin around and shoot her with a blow dart or something, a lot of tension drained from her throat. He dragged a can over, sat, and practically tried to paralyze her with the intensity of that gaze. He did a pretty good job of it too, but mostly because Rune felt like she’d been hit by a truck rather than actual intimidation. Mostly.

The first things out of his mouth was far from what she expected. Actually, she didn’t know what to expect. All she knew was what was right in front of her. She knew only what her eyes saw and went only where her nose led. That frosty bite, cold as the glassy color of his irises, dripped into his story and Rune found herself blinking in disbelief.

He’s a spook!??

For someone who wrangled a gangly Rak-sha out of toolshed in Montana and smoked a blood-thirsty choopy out of its foxhole in Arizona, Rune has having a little bit of trouble coming to grips with this. He’s an Anti-CCD spook. American? She ran her eyes up and down where he sat. Maybe he was American. And he killed five ghul. That was impressive.

His next series of commands clawed at her frayed patience, and she stared flatly back. Since it seemed neither of them was going to kill the other one, she held herself from rolling her eyes. Barely.

He shoved himself up but a streak of sarcasm escaped anyway. ”Maybe I ain’t tryin’ to catch flies,” she muttered under her breath and pulled herself up, swiping her dirty palms against her thighs then retrieving the stake. She thought about slipping it back in her pocket, but set it aside instead. She didn't live this life because she was looking for sororities and ice cream socials.

She was in the process of shrugging her jacket off when he slipped his shirt from his shoulders. Don’t look, she told herself and made busy work of unbuckling her own holsters. She set the equipment aside, but when he spoke again, she dutifully looked, and immediately regretted it.

Her mouth went dry.

She frantically tried to think something to say, but all she muttered was poorly constructed comebacks. A bad play on words about horses and mounties. Alexander Keith was a Canadian beer, after all.

She glanced at the trap door leading up, definitely considering those ice pack and just exactly how she was going to wedge them... places, then looked back as he was messing with putting pressure on the cut. It looked like nothing worse than a bad cat scratch. Knowing men, he was probably ready to get it stapled. ”Seriously?” She mouthed, ired, then stalked over. Her boots thudding loudly as she came, just so he was aware of their proximity to one another. She was still slightly suspicious of him, especially after having learned he was like the American Jim Bond (James Bond’s son).

She snatched the first aid kit, rummaged for a square patch of gauze and tore the paper sealant. Then dug out a bottle of peroxide and tube of antibiotic ointment, placing them alongside the bodytape. ”I ain’t a kindergartener and don’t need a nap. Turn.” She gave a little loopy-loop motion with one finger and waited, pink brows furrowed demandingly. The cut was in a kind of hard to reach spot, after all. ”I’ve patched up guys with nothin’ but an old sock and a shoelace off my boot.” She showed him the high-tech, tactical boots cladding her feet. They were waterproof, steel-toed, and practical. ”I can handle a fancy sterile kit gauze.”

- Hood - 08-06-2013

Maybe he was starting to get through to her. Maybe she had realized she should stop being so damnably confrontational all the time. Or maybe she had a thing for strong backs. Whatever the case, he seemed to have finally dulled that quick tongue of hers, because the stab at his beer of choice didn't have much heat to it. Whatever the case, he let the comment go without retort; he had work to do and she had been doing nothing but throwing shit his way since her arrival.

His posture tensed when she approached; no sudden knee-jerk stiffening, more like a large predatory cat readying to pounce, well shaped muscles across his back visibly tightening. And he relaxed just as visibly when she dove into the first aid kit. He just shrugged and lifted that arm to give her plenty of room to work, and glanced down at boots she was so keen in showing off; a good brand. Serviceable, functional. And more importantly, laced up good and proper rather then dangling open like some common gutter-trash punk.

He stayed still till she was done, then nodded his thanks after giving his arm a few tentative slow rotations and twisted a bit at the hips to make sure the tape and bandaging wouldn't bunch up or come loose too easily; less out of a doubt that she did it right, more so just because it was a good idea to do. One could never be entirely certain until it was all done. Sometimes tape just didn't work right. Satisfied it would last the night barring any issues, he started unlocking the cabinets. Rune and Aria would have a free run of the armoury; that's what it was there for after all.

"Sub-sonic ammo on this shelf. Coupled with one of these, drops the decibal range of weapons fire by 10 to 12 points. Won't carry as far, and will muffle in the tunnels. Less likely for someone hearing it to realize it's weapons fire."
He tugged an old MP5SD3 from one of the racks; they were a tried and tested submachine gun, very popular in movies about special forces back near the turn of the millenia, and were still in use even in the '40s, with a few minor modern conveniences of course. He set one aside for himself; the two Atharim had brought their own weapons, but ammo was plentiful in the armoury. That was one thing he hadn't had much trouble getting his hands on since arriving in the city. Firearms were more challenging.

He'd be spending most of the time until their departure in the armoury, organizing his kit for this little endeavour and giving Rune and Aria time to share notes on the upcoming errand. Among what he was readying was a tactical pack into which he loaded cuffs and zip ties and various other odds and ends to deal with the new friend they were soon to make. He hadn't had enough time to try and acquire a dart gun, unfortunately; such things were always a hassle to hunt down, especially on short notice, and he hadn't had any reason to add one to the arsenel yet.

Edited by Hood, Aug 6 2013, 06:02 PM.

- Rune - 08-07-2013

Rune tossed the roll of tape and empty gauze paper back in the first aid kit while Hood checked the security of the bindings. He’d live with only a couple squirts of liquid bandage, but he seemed intent on surgical conditions. Then again, Rune may have been underexaggerating (is that a word?) the intensity of that swipe. She did have a seriously sore spot when it came to wefuke.

While Hood about being a baby, Rune busied herself with getting a better look around. She hadn’t been paying too much attention the first time through, after all. She crossed to the wall opposite the bench and peered into the floor-to-ceiling lockers. She was focused, eyeing marks and manufacturers where they could be seen. About then Hood unlocked the racks and pulled a old-styled MP5 out. Of this particular rifle, H&Ks were easiest to get these days, what with the German company being bought out a while back, compared to their flashier counterparts hauled around today. Still, Rune nodded her approval and slid over nearer Hood, folding her arms while he adorably explained the purpose of the silencer’s purpose.

”Take it yah don’t have any newer model SDs? In case yah haven’t noticed, I ain’t a six foot tall grunt with monkey arms. Newer ones have a more customizable retraction-length stock.” She smiled and blinked, knowing, just knowing, that he’d be taken off-guard by the fact that she like... actually knew how to handle a weapon.

Then just to jab the proverbial stake a little deeper in his danglers, she pulled a matching MP5 off the rack, grimacing at the annoying amount of weight. Newer ones, designed for women in close quarters battle, were made of high-grade, lighter metal and were easier to heft around in general. Of course some sacrifice had to be made in power, but Rune wasn’t storming Normandy here. When piling on all the equipment for a night like this, losing an extra two or three pounds was like cutting lose an anchor, but Rune wasn’t as built as she was cause she likes watching herself do curls in the mirror....

She inspected the weapon for recent cleaning, service and proper function. There was no need to orient herself to it, since she was plenty experienced with it. But on the inside she was literally drooling. Uncle Seth would kill to have seen a place like this, and here his niece had her pick of the place. Such as any of the other variants around, but if Hood planned on carrying the MP5, then Rune would also, if only for the ease of sharing ammo should they need to. It was best for teams to have that kind of compatibility after all.

Rifle claimed for herself, she set it aside and went about gathering appropriate magazines. All in all, she pulled seven. One to load immediately, though she kept it in a more locked condition at the moment. There was no point taking the weapon into ready state until they left anyway. The extra six she lined up on the bench across the room with her ever growing pile of claimed items.

Then, without being too chatty about it, though she did keep an eye on what and where the …. still friggin shirtless …. Cuddles was doing and where he was doing it, she explored for the specifics of her equipment.

She didn’t often work in teams like this, so she didn’t own her own Land Warrior glasses. She had only a basic working knowledge of them, but like any kid grown up in technology, she figured out the basics pretty fast. She picked a set with a clear lens, since they were going to be out and about at night. It was mostly for communications anyway. In case the three of them were separated or needed to coordinate movements without giving away their position by screaming at one another. They came in multiple colors, and Hood had a couple to choose from. So Rune picked a black pair, because they just looked awesome.

She had to ask where he kept holsters, and once directed, quickly chose what she needed. First and foremost she snagged the smallest Kevlar vest he had. Which even though the straps tightened it down, Rune was trying to be practical here. It had room for four mags on the front, which meant the belt she selected needed to hold three more, the remaining two for the MP5 and a spare for her sidearm. All of this went on the bench near her ever growing pile of selections.

Which led her back to the two weapons she’d deposited along with her jacket from before smacking that bandage on Cuddle’s … would he just friggin put on a shirt already!? … side.

Unlike the MP5, which was pretty much universally used in police enforcement and militaries around the world, a specific pistol was very much up to the preference of the user. Hers had an internal hammer, mostly because she didn’t like having to mess with it in her hand, lightweight, single action triggered and semiautomatic. She was strong enough for a beefier gun, and stopping power was friggin important, but she also needed something easy to conceal and easy to maneuver. After all, it wasn’t that often that full-scale raids like this were necessary. Most of her hunting days were spent walking around in full view of the public, and only a small fraction took her on an actual chase.

She set the gun aside, contemplating whether or not to take it. With the MP5 as her primary weapon, carrying two secondaries (and spare mags) added weight and bulk, but she’d have to wear both the belt holster and a dropleg holster to make it work. She ended up leaving the gun as it was for now and pulled the second.

Her second sidearm was a bit flashier... and her favorite. At the moment it was kept in a safer positioning for carriage: the magazine was loaded, but the chamber was empty. It was not as common as the first, but standard enough to fit any common belt holster, which she had in her duffel upstairs.

It was a two-tone black, ready to be equipped with an integral suppressor (not on at the moment), compact and highly effective. The flashy part about it were the attachment options. Rune had a couple upstairs, but at the moment, it was fitted with an Optics Jammer that produced a precisely aimed electromagnetic pulse that could interfere with or temporarily disable electrical equipment like lights, cameras or computers. It came in handy for a Hunter who didnt want to be caught on video.

Finally, Rune inspected her gatherings, aimlessly thinking through what else to get. She had a few more pieces of specialized equipment in her bag, such as the wefuke stake, that she’d grab when she went back upstairs.

Oh,” she suddenly spoke aloud, twisting over her shoulder to glance at Hood. ”I doubt Aria’s going to be carrying one of these,” she pat the butt of the MP5, ”So pull some extra mags for her to carry, just in case.” The other Atharim would need her own supply, but if she primarily relied on edged weapons, then there’d be plenty of room on her small-framed body to haul around extra for her team. Rune assumed, of course, that she herself was going to be in charge. Since she figured that as the resident furia, she’d be the one literally in the lead.

Rune ended up leaving the equipment down here and made to go back upstairs. ”And I’ll sync you up with the coordinates we need as soon as we fire up our glasses. We should exit through your tunnel trap door. No point walking around at street level looking like stormtroopers.” With that, she disappeared upstairs.

Where... very first thing.... she checked the room and stalked over to the fridge to grab those ice packs. There was still a good hour before leaving after all, and Rune’s shoulder and chest and head and arm were all throbbing.

She dropped into a seat with four packs. They were filled with frozen pebbles and so easily conformed to her body shape, like frozen peas. She wedged one between behind her shoulder, laid another on her wrist, balanced a third between the back of her skull and the wall, and leaned back enough to lay the fourth across her chest.

She rolled her eyes, tsking under her breath as she went. ”Frikkin rough handed ain’t he?” She spoke to Aria while squeezing her eyes shut with a wince for the cold. ”Thanks for havin’ my back down there.” Rune said without too much emotion. She wasn’t exactly the sort of girl with the developed social skills lending itself to being BFF’s forever, but she wasn’t completely oblivious either. But it was awkward none the less, and Rune was ready to get down to business. ”So I got the coordinates for the downed Hunter’s last known location. If thats where it all went down, they would have stunk up the place enough that I should be able to track his scent back to their hidey hole.”

She lifted her lids to pin Aria with her gaze, then added offhandedly, ”I’m Furia,” and waited to see if Aria recognized what that was or not.

((Ooc: I kinda moved stuff along a bit, hope that's cool. Jax looks like he's gettin' squirmy ^__^; Also, Rune doesn't know that Aria is also Furia, which explains that last bit. Finally, I figured we'd stay underground until we reach an isolated spot enough to surface and stay out of sight enough to be ignored, then go back under near where it all went down. From there we'll use our noses to find their lair.))

Edited by Rune Marx, Aug 7 2013, 05:22 PM.

- Aria - 08-07-2013

Aria flicked through the articles. There seemed to be a number of rapes and missing persons in the Red Light district. But the deaths were few and far between. Aria didn't find any reports that seemed to coincide with the area of the hospital from the report she had been initially sent. These monsters weren't killing in the typical pattern. Aria wondered what was different about them.

The time was flying reading the articles and pinning important ones on her new wallet's gps. Aria saw great potential in this and in time would transfer her journal to the wallet. Aria ran her hand over the leather covering of her journal and smiled. She would miss it, but the wallet could do so much more than notes on paper.

Aria figure it was time to start getting ready, but first it was time to open that huge brown box her father... no Father Dimitri, she had to get use to that, had sent her. Aria bit back the bile that rose in her stomach at the mere thought of being deceived like that. But it was probably her own fault.

The box contained various things. Aria pulled out a few things she couldn't pack with her on her trip to Moscow, her favorite pillow, blanket, things from her childhood and a stick labeled 'cartoons'. She smiled. For all it was worth, Father Dimitri had treated as one of his own, she couldn't hate him for that. Aria slipped the stick into her journal so it wouldn't get lost in the move.

At the bottom of the box was a rather large tome. Aria carefully lifted it out of the box. There was not a spec of dust on it, Father Dimitri had sent her the tome with detailing done to it. Aria flipped the leather cover over and saw in her clean hand. "My Monster Guide", it read. With a crude drawing of some monster Aria had seen in a book when she was little. This book contained everything she had ever learned about monsters. But more importantly it was how Aria learned to read and write.

Aria clearly remembered having to copy passages from books perfectly in the book. It wasn't this book when she started. Only the perfect pages had been kept and bound together with additional pages for her to learn from. Father Dimitri had insured she understand everything in it. Aria set it down the cot for later use. Now it was time to get ready for the hunt.

She was mostly ready. The clothes she'd chosen earlier were well suited for going out and getting dirty in. She opened her bag and pulled out the second hand military issue combat boots and laced them up quickly. She didn't really care if she looked out of place. It was going to look worse, once she pulled on the elbow length leather gloves.

Aria set aside the gloves, they made getting ready hard and the belts didn't strap on easily. Her swords were once again back on her back and her guns at her side. Aria pulled her gloves on and made sure the fingers fit well before donning a black long sleeved shirt. The less skin that was exposed the better off she would be.

It was awefully quiet down stairs. By the time Aria had donned her things she wondered if they'd killed each other. Aria didn't have time to wonder long before Rune came in sporting a few ice packs and crashing on one of the chairs.

"Frikkin rough handed ain’t he? Thanks for gettin' my back down there."

Aria nodded and spoke softly quietly through the emptiness, "No problem." She smiled, "Glad he didn't kill you. Or he us."

"So I got the coordinates for the downed Hunter's last known location. If thats where it all went down, they would have stunk up the place enough that I should be able to track his scent back to their hidey hole. I’m Furia."

It was an admission that she herself wasn't about to make so nonchalantly. But in the effort of explaining her prior problems Aria nodded, "Me too."

- Rune - 08-07-2013

Rune rested while the blessedly cold ice packs did their numbing magic. For once she looked quiet and relaxed. Even when she'd lounged on the steps with the beer, a cloud of frustrated ire surrounded her head. Now though, with one hand folded against her abdomen and her shoulders laid back, she was turned inward and thoughtful. Aria's narrow movements and somber tone only added to the quiet. A trickle of cold water snaked down the back of her neck and pooled at the collar of her tanktop. It felt wonderful. In the far distance she thought she heard a metro train, but it was too muffled by the sea-can walls, and she dismissed the sound.

Then Aria's quiet admission shattered it all.

Rune's eyes popped straight open and she stared at Aria, gaping. She was a furia! Rune didn't know if the shock was that it was Aria who was the furia or that Rune was actually in the presence of one (not including herself). They were fairly rare, she thought, and part of why the Atharim had so much invested in Rune. Suspicion immediately jumped to the front of her brain, and Rune wondered if Tehya arranged their working together on purpose. Then she sheepishly wondered why it was Tehya thought this job needed two furia. Didn't she trust Rune? Did she think she couldn't get it done? Then sending them to go with Hood?

No no. Rune couldn't think like that. Orders were orders, Tehya had to know what she was doing to have arranged this skewed triangular team. Why did she want one alive?

Rune relaxed after a few moments, but she never quite regained her previous sleepy posture. She kept Aria in her gaze. In fact, she curiously studied the woman's peripheral belongings... a book, gloves, and (nice) boots. "Sorry about that. I'd never met another furia before." Rune trailed off, thinking back to the strange meeting that led to her meeting Aria in Old Arbat.

"So, umm, that's why you're skiddish?" Not to be nosy, well, actually Rune was being nosy, she just didn't care. Either Aria would tell her what had her wound so tight she couldn't sneeze without blowing out the back of her skull or she would tell Rune to mind her own business. "I mean, like earlier at that cafe. When you bumped into the table. You didn't really have a migraine did you?"

- Hood - 08-07-2013

So the kid wasn't just another pretty face, and kept some space in that thick skull of hers for something more useful then hair-dye techniques and makeup application. He was well aware that Atharim had embraced firearms, but most of those he worked with had raging hard-ons for more traditional styles of combat; melee weapons being at the forefront of that drive. And maybe there was a place for that in their strange world.

"Shit out of luck. Anything after '37 is registered in a CCD database, complete with rifling pattern. There isn't much of a market for them on the street."
He had plans to acquire the kit he'd need to re-do the rifling in the barrels, which would open a whole new world for what he could willingly stock, but he hadn't been in Moscow long enough to do so. And the black market here was dying fast.

Much as she was busying herself with loading up, he did much the same. Magazines were bombed up with ammo, and each magazine he readied he loaded a tracer round as the third from the bottom. A simple trick to help alert yourself that the mag was almost empty. Not something he was actually too concerned with forgetting in the heat of battle, but it was an old habit. He tossed a package of pen flares and launcher in a pouch on the vest he would use as well. Always a handy tool to help point out targets in the heat of a firefight. Also handy for warding off animals.

Along with the MP5, he belted on a drop leg holster, into which was clipped his Mateba autorevolver. Mostly for intimidation factor; folks had a tendancy to be more talkative when facing down a hand cannon. The holster came with a veritable anti-tank knife strapped alongside the revovler, dominating his right leg. The vest he had chosen also came with a brace of three small throwing knives, each one sheathed grip-down over the magazine pouches. An assortment of curious tools and gadgets were tucked away as well, including a high-density rubber encased harddrive and power source. It was wirelessly synched with his personal pair of Land Warriors, providing a dead-man tracking capability and a few other functions that required more processing power then the advanced glasses had built in.

Hood set a few more mags aside to be filled at Rune's comment, but otherwise remained silent as he continued on with his own preperations and she headed up the ladder. He clipped an LED dazzler onto his SMG, although he doubted it would see much use against a cannibal freak; the few things he had fought so far hadn't been the type with the forward thinking capacity to use a gun. But there were more then just monsters prowling the undercity; gangs could be just as, if not more, dangerous under the right circumstancse.

Only a few minutes after Rune had climbed up did he return to the main floor, where he spared the two Atharim women a glance before making his way into the main bedroom to get changed, leaving the two to continue sorting out whatever details they needed to. It still seemed odd that two newly arrived Atharim, who seemed to barely know each other, were being sent on a bag-and-tag run. Strange that the Atharim would even entertain the idea of bagging something that went bump in the night.