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A Blind Eye
The sun was setting when Spectra's car wound through the glass columns of downtown Moscow City. Its firy rays broke between the buildings every few blocks, and during the long minutes they were stuck in traffic, Spectra rested her chin on the back of her hand and studied the reflection of the nearby Moscow River.

When finally they pulled up in front of a building, the driver opened her door, and Spectra emerged practically lost to their exact location. A few members of paparazzi flashed her picture, and their glittering captive briefly indulged their pleas.

"Dominiano Cadici,"
she answered in response to one question. The designer of this slip of a dress was famous for his metallic threading and futuristic cuts. The bronze and copper sheen played beautifully against her golden skin and green eyes, but even the accessories on loan from some of Moscow's top jewelers took second stage to the seductive smile of the woman modeling them.

Building security cleared a path, and Spectra was escorted inside. The lobby of this skyscraper was secure as a prison, and for good reason, although there were certain to be quieter entrances elsewhere. One of the Custody Directors called this home, likely somewhere high in the clouds so screening those coming and going was an important responsibility.

Spectra had been to such parties before, but never had she entertained so high a government official before. Directors were in charge of entire Custodies, and Spectra leaped at the chance to attend anything of prominence. Not only was she paid well, but additional chances to inject herself into powerful grasps was always welcome.

The elevator ride was uneventful. She was one of the earliest arrivals, but she integrated herself with the few other pieces of arm candy placed around the penthouse like sculptures of art.

She was unconcerned about the forthcoming night's activities which were sure to be abundantly gray in the eyes of the CCD law, but according to Spectra's experience, she was sure to turn a blind eye to all sorts of things tonight.
Yuri's bike idled in gridlock traffic and his temper soured to match the acrid fumes wafting among the pavement. He hated downtown and itched to just grab hold of the power and start flinging cars about, just to get them the fuck out of his way. This ritzy-ditsy shindig Skinny Britches had told him about better be worth his trouble.

He finally pulled up to the address and kicked the stand over to keep his bike in place. Yeah, looked about right. Glittering skyscraper with a valet outside and a couple of other uniformed dudes who looked like trouble. Fuck. He'd gotten himself cleaned up and all, but still, leather jacket and shirt with no tie...he totally didn't fucking fit in with the crowd that'd be here. No black bow tie or nothing. Whatever, he'd just stick to the plan to get in, hang out in the background, and look for potential buyers.

But best act like he belonged here, first. He gave a terse nod to the valet and threw the bike's keys in the man's direction. "Park her,"
he said. The keys had been crafted by the fencer who'd also removed all traces of the bike's previous ownership. Dude was talented, Yuri could give him that. He'd also come with a heavy price tag. Still not as expensive as actually buying his own bike. Score.

The guys at the front door didn't look like they were going to buy any of his act. The two moved to block his entrance, arms crossed. Yuri rolled his eyes. "Tell the penthouse that the candy man is here,"
he said to them.

One of them stepped aside and looked like he was muttering to himself. Must be calling upstairs. After a moment, the guy came back. "All right, go in, take the elevator to the top."

Yuri nodded at the man, and couldn't resist a smirk as the guards opened the door for him. He took the elevator to the top, and turned the gold-plated handle on the door to enter the penthouse suite. What a waste of money, a gold-plated door handle. Guy hosting this shindig must be one of those cunts who just wanted to show off exactly how much wealth he had to throw away at stupid things like gold door handles.

As Yuri walked in, he surveyed the people there. Definitely lots of hot tail running about. Some guys with suits, some dressed down but with rich cuts to their clothing all the same -- yeah, they all acted like they had a chip on their shoulder the size of the world. Pretentious snobs. Whatever. Maybe he'd be able to feel out them one at a time and find if they'd be willing purchasers.

Across the room a man dressed in a penguin suit complete with coat tails and a black bow tie hovered over a table with a white table cloth topped with empty glasses.

An open bar. Perfect. Maybe this night wouldn't be a total loss. Yuri made his way over to the bartender. "I'll take vodka with lime. Hold the ice. And don't shake it."

The man nodded, and poured the drink. His eyes seemed laden with fatigue. Guy probably had a long night ahead of him.

Yuri downed the drink in one big gulp. Ooh, yeah, that was the stuff. Burning got right down to the point and the lime gave a nice aftertaste. He reached into his pocket and pulled out one of the bags of Mudak's pills. He figured he'd be able to make up the money through the rest of the night.

He put one single pill on the white cloth table and pushed it toward the bartender. "This will get you through the night, I promise. It's on the house."
The bartender took it between two fingers and examined it with an inquisitive eye. "Anybody asking for the good stuff, just send them my way. I'm the candy man."

Edited by Yuri Obrechennyy, Oct 24 2013, 04:11 AM.
When the bar tender traded off to go take a piss, he met Silas on the way who'd been lounging around the kitchen in this massive condo. The whole goddamn place was bigger than the palace in Addis Ababa. The kitchen? Well they didn't have kitchens in shithole Africa. At least there a guy could drag a fresh kill back to his hut without trouble. The current waft of slow-roasted meats was turning his stomach. High-class idiots ruined good meat.

The bartender approached him with a familiar air, but not a word passed between the two men. His fellow contractor barely paused in step to place a small pill in Silas' palm on his way to the john.

Golden eyes narrowed suspiciously etching every mark and edge on the tiny drug. This couldn't possibly be what he thought it was.

He shoved it in the pocket of his sport coat. He was dressed to the nines tonight in a slick gray shirt and coat, but nothing else about Silas screamed wealth. The young punk kid he used to be would have plastered the brand all over his fucking forehead, but he was beyond the labels now.

He casually strolled out of the 'employee's domain' and wandered back into the fray. The view only reminded him how deep in the heart of Moscow waters he tred, and danger spiked warning in the back of his mind: an instinct he had to put down like a rabid dog; the countryside called, but now there was work to do.

Silas was looking for the leech pushing drugs without going through him. Course, all the big dogs in town knew high-rank and file government types always went through a runner; and runners were always on staff as anonymous, independent contractors. Therefore some ignorant fucker was shoving his dick in a society that didn't want to be fucked with.

There were ways to do things, but this wasn't it. Meant he needed to find some hothead green kid who stood out like a sore thumb when he assumed he fit right in before things turned for the both of them: it was a delicate ecosystem he played; Silas didn't belong there any more than the shitbrained kid did, but only one of them knew how to deal the cards. Spectra Lin was only the tip of the iceberg considering whose condo this was.

After a bit of roaming through the gallery, the library, the art halls, and a terrace or two, and peeling off an unknown number of hands circling his arm or thwarting lustful looks meeting his golden gaze, he came across a potential candidate.

The fucker wasn't even wearing a tie. Silas sneered, cautiously victorious that he'd found the 'candy man'. "Trick or treat," he came up behind him.
[From Kings of the Castle]

You know. It didn't bother him a bit that Oriena declined his palm. She buckled in the end; Jaxen didn't care about the means.

Last, tie dangling around his neck like some skinny scarf, he followed her lead until smooth strides carried him past her brisk pace.

If the club was thinly populated when he arrived earlier that evening, now a line of patrons wound around the corner. Valets and bouncers alike took stock of their exit, but neither gave much note that their owner was one of the two. A curious note flickered across his brow. Why hide her power? He had to assume it was for the same reason he hid his fame behind a litany of pseudonyms and false aliases.

He slipped the ferryman some incentive, but no Lambo turned the corner -- course he lost his last one in a bet, so it would be a while before he got around to replacing it. Maybe with something more old-school next time, like an Aston Martin: the James Bond kind of class-act. Neither did a blacked-out towncar pick them up. It was a cab. Regular, old fashioned, good and anonymous cab. He was suppose to be hiding, but he wasn't too sure from who; an annoyingly undiscovered detail.

Since Oriena was the kind of goddess that oozed old-fashioned Lady, Jaxen stopped himself from opening her door with a mischievous grin. The broad could pull her own damn handle. Besides, her hand could use the warm up. Don't want to sprain anything later. His grin beamed with sinful pomposity.

He did, however, take some liberties once they were nestled inside. He laid his hand on her knee and absently fingered the edge of her dress for a while, completely and innocently oblivious to any and all shifty grazing of her thigh; not that it compared to the curves his hands gripped during the dance. Thrumming with power, never had a woman's skin felt so velvety before. He was down right anxious to toy with the implications. To push the boundaries and see how far the thrill extended; particularly how far he could ride the high until losing control completely. The game wasn't to win: it was to manipulate convention as far as he could primarily to see if he could get away with it. The same incentive was how he managed to single-handedly steal a jet right out of its bunker and zip to Prague last year. Or how a few antique pieces out of the Austrian Ecclesiastical Treasury came to be scattered around his otherwise ultra modern home. All but one: the Ainkhürn. The so-called 'unicorn horn' infamous for magical properties came home just because he fucking liked it. Now it was mounted over his bed like some abstract - and priceless - art piece. And not at all symbolic. If a guy is going to mount phallic pieces over his bed, he might as well do it as sarcastically as possible. Visitors to the room always commented on what a surprising design element it was. Fucking hilarious.

Considering the building they entered, Jaxen took in the extra bodies guarding the lobby with passing interest. Usually, he welcomed the hand-and-foot service, but tonight he was content to slide on an elevator without drawing much attention. But the temptation became too much, and sped by the sense of invincibility, he probed the building's doormen for the low down. They obliged without hesitation. Jaxen was one ally they clearly wanted on their side: he profits, they profit. A win-win situation for all involved, a system Jax had no problem exploiting.

"Looks like there's a Privy Party on the top floor,"
he informed Oriena with a shrug once the elevator doors cloaked them in privacy. He didn't elaborate on which member of the Sphere was sucking all the fun to the top of the building, but if Oriena was at all informed, she'd already know. Well. Not all the fun.

As promised, however, they stopped at his floor. Even if they did intend on crashing the party, he wanted a change of clothes. The dance, fucking awesome dance, had worked up a sweat. If Oriena was interested, a selection of women's wardrobe options was only a buzz away. The lobby did have an array of Fashion Week's best selections on display downstairs. All part of the perks of living in luxury: on site designer-wear at residents' beck and call.

The security system to his place was top-notch. He'd know, but a few moments after disarming it, he strode in, flipped on the lighting system, highlighted for evening's flattery, for both interior and exterior views alike, and turned with humorous welcome. "Home sweet home."
Make yourself comfortable, she was really going to enjoy this.
"So?" said Loki impatiently.  "This isn't the first time the world has come to an end, and it won't be the last either."
Jaxen +
Loki +
+ Jole +
Yuri flashed a semblance at a smile and pocketed the cash given to him by the suit over by the terrace balustrade overlooking the twinkling stars overhead and the Moscow lights beneath. "Come see me if you need more,"
he said. Not that it was likely. Guy had bought a lot, and from the looks of it the little doll by his side -- more plastic than flesh, probably -- just one pill would be enough to get her willing to do anything.

He turned away from the guy -- dude's head was so far up his own ass Yuri was surprised he could even speak. He probably ran the motor vehicle division or something like that. At least he'd had plenty of money, enough to get a premium price from one of his bags. Customers had been harder to find than he'd expected. That bartender must not be doing his job promoting him. And I wasted a pill on that fucker.
But Yuri had found a number of guests quite willing to accept solicitations. Yeah, they were practically begging to get fucked up -- and had plenty of money on them. Wouldn't be long before he made Mudak's minimum and he still had plenty of shit to sell.

Yuri took another swig from his drink. At least the bartender had done something right. The vodka was doing its job. Yuri swam in the power -- grasping as much as he could hold, he rode that rush of fire and ice and felt so...alive.

Yuri made his way back through the hallway. Maybe there'd be some new food out by now. Hopefully something with charred meat.

He stopped mid-hall. Footsteps behind him. So soft he wouldn't have heard them had he not been so full of the power. "Trick or treat," he heard.

Yuri opened the door to a side bedroom -- empty at the moment -- and turned around. Sure as shit, there was a man there who had followed him. A big guy, short hair and full, trimmed beard, with a well-cut gray shirt and coat. Didn't really scream of looking for ways to throw his money around, but certainly not underground trash. Yuri hadn't seen him around before.

"Trick or treat. That's funny. You looking for a treat, maybe I can help you out,"
Yuri said.

He met the man's gaze. Something about the way the guy stared at Yuri set him on edge. Fucking yellow eyes? What stupid looking contacts.

"I got shit to do, man, speak up or get on your way."

Candy man turned out to be a skinny kid slinking down the hall. And weathered as hell: skin drawn across his face like some plastic mask, gaunt as deadwood and glazed off as fuck. A dealer tasting his own shit wouldn't last the month. If it weren't for the thanks he'd get for putting Blue Candy into eager hands he'd ring the kid out a new asshole and dump in bones in the river.

Luckily for shitbreak, fortune favored the greedy.

Silas strolled to his side, reached around and pulled the door shut. The place wasn't a tourist trap where just anyone could take a corner and squat a dump. Didn't mean Silas was interested in center stage business deals, but he was not interested in being seen escorting some Dick For Hire into a bedroom alone. He had fucking morals, you know.

"Maybe I am, and maybe you can help me out," his reply rolled from somewhere deep and hollow. "Or more like help out the people I represent."

He reached into his pocket and pulled forth the million dollar baby.

"I'm looking for Candy," he tossed the pill back to its owner. A little gesture from a big man.

Edited by Silas Kole, Oct 25 2013, 07:14 PM.
Spectra was a marvel to those brave enough to fall into her shadow. Men and women alike flocked to her charming smile which she offered as a gracious and generous reward.

She was a steady stream of water, dripping from room to room. The bodies of those she passed matched names brimming with authority, and she twinkled with anticipation. Her world was always constructed in beauty, but it was proximity to power that drew Spectra's sweet sampling, a bee tasting one succulent flower amid a garden of possibilities.

Returning from the solace of freshening herself, she came upon two men speaking quietly with one another. The first had the look of a predator, but not the one leading the back, rather the animal loping aside his kin. That dark hair and thick beard combined with the stature of his shoulders, Spectra easily pegged his role as employed muscle. Her childhood masters would never have placed their doting diamond beauty in a palm such as his. She would have been too valuable to waste on employees when the bosses were waiting in another room, but Spectra learned early that men such as he were the ones to win alliances. They gripped other powers than the obvious, and were often less expensive to win.

The other man was closer to her age, and in many ways the complete opposite as the first. She recognized neither, but the tell-tale signs of a user were obvious to her bountiful experiences. She was ultimately a daughter of Cubano cartels, the life was in her blood, and until she was nearly twenty-years old, she knew nothing of the world but that which existed behind iron fences, machine guns, and the vicious dogs of Colombian villas.

She approached slowly, a lotus flower floating on a lily that may or may not wash to their shore. The coppery thread of her dress cut harsh asymmetry across the arc of her voluptuous, enhancing a passionate femininity mixed with equal parts Latina heat and Egyptian mystique, was a perfect balance of opposites as bright as viridian eyes glowing above the metallic bronze of her skin.

"¿Qué más?"
She asked of their well-being with a slightly patronizing tone but accented with all the thick mystery of the rainforest itself. She was aware what was likely to be going on between them, and unless halted, was uninterested in participating.
The fresh air enlivened Ori’s senses, spiking through her pleasant haze of intoxication. Entwined with her grasp on the warm buzz of power, it made her feel very alive. The lights illuminating Kallisti’s grand exterior punctuated the soft velvet of the night, its imposing architecture casting insignificance on the line snaking its way from the doors - or promising exclusivity, depending on how you looked at it. She paid them little mind, and the ignorance was mutual. Ahead, Jaxen had already started down the steps, and Ori followed; she wasn’t sad to leave the club and the people in it behind.

She didn’t seem fazed by the pull up of a rather ordinary cab; nor did she pause in expectation of Jaxen opening the door – for much the same reason she’d been unaffected by his abandonment of her on the stage. Lessons learnt of self-sufficiency trailed all the way back to childhood, and she was loathe to rely on others even for the smallest things. It irritated her more when those choices were taken away under the guise of manners than when guys circumvented convention to take a dig. Respect she insisted upon, but it was the respect of an equal; chivalry in men was an often empty gesture, and not something she coveted in a stranger. She wasn’t after a prince; her intentions were far baser. Still, she appreciated the game for what it was, and smirked dryly at him over the top of the cab before slipping inside.

Jaxen’s hand on her knee garnered little reaction. The faint possessiveness of it vexed, but since the cabdriver was the only witness, and he knew better than to flick his eyes to the rear-view mirror, it earned little in the way of chagrin. Otherwise it was a reticent gesture, or perhaps she was just used to a different calibre of man. Jaxen hadn’t struck her as the type for subtlety, though granted her impression was both hemmed in by such a short snippet of time in his company and the weight of a shit load of prejudice against those of his ilk. She wondered if he held onto that sense of power while he idled the fabric, if every incidental brush of flesh shuddered a sensory flood. A good reason to savour the little things; she certainly recalled the first time she’d discovered the implications of that particular enhancement.

For someone whose entire business revolved around the perfection of image, its cultivation and manufacture and sale, she was surprisingly indifferent to the surrounding opulence when they arrived. She had never belonged to this elite society, had only ever been a shadow of its underbelly, but the bright lights of wealth provided little lure - even power waned in and out of her motivations according to circumstance. She waited patiently while Jaxen sated his curiosity concerning the extra security, until they were humming up the floors in the elevator. “Weren’t invited, huh?”
For once the mock in her tone did not angle razors in the direction of his ego; she wasn’t pointing out his exclusion. Not that she was motiveless, either. Mischief edged her wayward smile; a conspirator’s smile. The question she really asked: so what are you going to do about it?

Ori wasn’t that interested in Jaxen’s décor, though she took a cursory sweep of it in a somewhat disinterested manner. There were flashes of archaic amidst the modernity, though otherwise it might have been the interior of any lavish hotel, and she had seen the inside of plenty of those. “Ostentatious,”
she remarked, straight-faced but for the barest curve of her lips. Her fingers tangled in the tie looped either side of his neck, winding in the fabric, inching herself closer. She’d let go of the power some time ago, when it had begun to burn at the outer edges and instinct had commanded her with the shrill warning of naked flame against flesh. She knew her limits; she could only hold onto it for so long in one sitting – like holding your breath – before it strained. Neither did she allow herself the luxury of submitting to it now –not yet anyway. She was as masterful at teasing herself as others.

Her lips hovered by his, and she didn’t need an enhancement of senses to feel the tug of temptation to just skip the dialogue. Her limbs felt like liquid, and heat tingled her skin. But knowledge of the party on the top floor stamped defiance on an otherwise lack of inhibition; the faint stirrings of predatory jealously. Up there, he’d be amongst his own, and she was of an all or nothing persuasion, even for a single night. “It feels like light. Every touch is magnified.”
They were alone, but the words were whispered, clandestine; she assumed he’d know exactly what she meant. Her fingers unravelled in one fluid motion as she stepped back, catching one end and slipping the tie from his neck. A devilish smile marked her retreat into his home-sweet-home; she did indeed make herself comfortable.
"You say you're a godman. So what? 
I'm the devil herself"
Alpha ~ Little Destroyer
[Image: orianderis.jpg]
Yuri broke his stare away from Yellow Eyes long enough to glance at the pill he'd been tossed. Yeah, it was one of his -- one of the many that were now circulating the penthouse. But if he was looking for Candy, why the fuck was he giving one back? That didn't make a bit of sense. Didn't he have any clue how much some of the dicks running around here were paying for the shit?

He tossed the pill back to the guy. "You go ahead and hold onto that one. Shit's way too valuable to just give away, you know."
He arched an eyebrow. "Maybe you've come to the right place. And maybe anyone can find what they're looking for if the price is right."

A voice interrupted from one side. A deep, silky, very sexy woman's voice. "¿Qué más?" What was that, Italian? Yuri turned and saw her. Wrapped in a coppery dress and creamy skin, curves and more...just one glance turned his mouth dry. And with the power swimming through her, every hair on her perfect head stood out as it shimmered down her shoulders, and the subtle scent she wore...Oh, what he'd love to do with her if he got her alone. Thoughts of his moment with Mudak's mistress Felicia didn't even begin to tell the story.

He pushed those thoughts to the back of his mind as far as he could with her there. She looked like a high-class dame, used to getting stares and guys dropping diamonds at her feet and shit. Red light perv bullshit wouldn't work with someone like her. He'd have to be smooth. Maybe she had a thing for bad boys from the street.

Yuri flashed her a smile and offered a hand to her. "I'm Yuri. And I'm shocked I didn't notice you here before. It's like seeing the sun come out from behind the clouds."
Yeah. That was smooth all right.
Of course they stopped her.

A flashed smile and Spectra deigned to dazzle the moment of business with a fragrance of pleasure. It seemed one of them had their priorities in order, anyway. She was used to men falling all over themselves around her, but she wasn't dismissive of the gesture. It filled her with the compulsion to devour more.

she purred contemplatively. Without waiting for the invitation, she curled her fingers around his arm and nestled in close. Yet Spectra's long limbs did not lead her to gaze down upon the side of his cheek. Instead, she curled up next to him and turned every morsel of her attention to his 'friend'.

Viridian orbs luminous as polished jade blinked with surprise. "What beautiful eyes. The sun god himself would be envious."

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