Author Topic: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]  (Read 226 times)

TheKaru

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Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« on: March 04, 2019, 03:53:01 PM »
It was a rather dark night in Vale, the sky was completely veiled in early spring clouds and the air was still chilly and wet from the rains the winds had brought over the city. Amidst one of the darker parts of the settlement's still bright clubbing areas was a somewhat unremarkable establishment, merely a front between more imposing brick buildings. Over the entrance hung a neon sign reading "The Dish", though the "D" seemed to have suffered some damage over the years that nobody had bothered dealing with so far, causing it to constantly flicker. In front of the building stood only a few people, clothed in mostly dark and earthy colours though some of them had bright accents woven into their outfits. Small puddles that had formed over the day, remnants of the rain, shimmered and vibrated from the vibrations of beats heard and felt from the nearby clubs and bars.
Inside, the establishment fulfilled most expectations one would have before entering it: It was dark, outdated and generally not in the best condition. Yet, it was full of people of different ages, some old and grey, others young and energetic. The Dish was definitely not a place you visit for the experience but rather somewhere people would meet up after a hard day of work or before going out to party through the night. It was something like a well known secret, a place that many people knew but still kept the charme of a niche bar. This, combined with the owner's ever-present hospitability and sense of humour made for a great hangout.
Sitting by the bar on this evening was a young man with hot pink hair, dressed in shades of pink and purple. He bobbed his head to the sound of electric guitars and drums while sipping a cocktail that probaby had been colourful once but by now mixed into a dirty shade of brown. He seemed to be waiting on someone or something, looking at a small clock behind the counter every so often.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2019, 11:12:19 AM by TheKaru »
Gram MacConkey 2nd Year Beacon Student and biohazard of Team ALGA

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 1/5]
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2019, 12:07:45 AM »
In the wet, rainy streets of Vale in the evening, a stranger walked alone.  Wearing a pale green coat with the hood up, what facial features that did show marked him as a foreigner.  And as he walked through the darkened roads, some might initially think him an easy mark.  But those minds would soon change after witnessing the eerie phenomenon that followed him.

A ghostly lantern, suspended on nothing more than thin air, lazily hung above him and casted a spectral light that illuminated his path.  Strapped to the man’s waist was another, albeit larger, lantern with eight different colored windows.  Foreigner as he may be, this man was clearly more than he appeared.

As the man walked through the city, he eventually came across a dive bar, a place called “The Dish” if the sign out front is anything to go by.  ”This place will do, I guess,” Lucas muttered to himself as he walked towards the entrance.  It was still relatively close to the rest of Vale’s nightlife, but it was far enough away that it wasn’t too crowded.  And while the hermit would generally prefer a quieter place, he nonetheless walked through the door, the lantern vanishing into thin air as he does.

Observing the interior, Lucas noted the place needed some serious maintenance.  But despite that, it seemed to be relatively busy, all things considered.  People of all ages seemed to congregate here, which meant this place somehow had widespread appeal.  ”Hmm, I don’t really get it, but whatever works for them, I guess,” the young man thought to himself as he grabbed a seat at the bar.

”Excuse me,” he hailed the bartender, ”Could I get a whiskey and lemonade?  I’ll start a tab.”  after taking care of the financial details, the bartender went off to fetch his drink.  In the meantime, he noticed another man sitting two seats down with a rather busy color scheme, for lack of a better term.  The pink-haired man seemed to be checking the clock every so often.  I did come here to get a feel for the city.  Might as well talk to the locals while I’m at it, he thought before addressing the fellow patron.

”You waiting on somebody?” 
Smokey Emberstone Beacon 1st Year and the Immovable Gunslinger of Team BSSM "I've got more than enough firepower to beat you" "You've only got one bullet!" "Like I said, more than enough"

Aurelia Lumen Beacon 3rd year and the Warhorse of Team (TBD)  "Lay down your weapons, lest you wish to taste my steel!"

Wabul "Toast" Paka Shade 1st year and the Acrobatic Swashbuckler of Team (TBD)  "Hey, I'm gonna go jump off a bridge, who's with me?"

Lucas Meridiem Haven 4th year and the Hermit of Team (TBD)  "What's so great about 'bittersweet'?"

Clara Meridiem Beacon 1st year and the Blast Magician of Team (TBD) "No one likes just plain ol' bitter"

Hexcodes:
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FFD700
E55812
CCE9AE

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 1/5]
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2019, 05:27:28 AM »
Calen was far less flamboyantly dressed than he could have been, that isn’t to say he wasn’t dressed flamboyantly in a thousand shades of green, fake leaves and a flowing cape which looked a lot better from far away and under bright light Calen still looked incredibly fae. Appropriate for himself, of course, having just finished his last performance playing Oberon which had been quite the steal for Calen, his first leading role and he had performed admirably to the point some reviews only mentioned his attendance at Beacon in passing and two not at all. Nevertheless seeing the Fae King walking down Beacon’s streets, hair fluttering in the non-existent wind and remaining completely dry despite the pouring rain drew more than a few glances. Of course, the reason for this was a wind dust device hidden in Calen’s crown but he was hardly going to ruin someone’s mystical wonder, not when it was giving himself such attention at any rate. (Just think a slightly more advanced air umbrella.)

Feeling on top of the world, Calen was on the prowl looking for excitement and adventure, months of all his already limited free time being eaten up by practice had paid off and he had things to catch up on. There was no reason to dive in too quickly, however. Didn’t the anticipation for the feast only build the appeal and inevitable satisfaction. Calen reasoned to himself. Recalling a small tavern which would serve his appetite well enough Calen hurried quickly over to the ‘Dish’ even using his semblance to clear the occasional building that got in his way. Recalling the promise of drink, company, stupid games and even stupid brawls only emphasised the delight the gaunt boy took in the cries of surprise, wonder and outrage as he made a mockery of road laws as well as trespassing ones.

Finding his way to the ‘Dish’ in quick order Calen even managed to make it inside without the police following him despite several threats he had heard from his way over. Good. It was far too early to be dancing with the police… maybe after dessert.’ Calen thought to himself. Still, the trip had taken a bit out of Calen and he was a bit flushed when he went straight to the bartender to order. ’A glass of sherry and a refill for everyone in the bar.’ Calen remarked tossing over a significant stack of lien and raising his voice so everyone could hear his generosity as otherwise what was the point. The cheers from the other drinkers were almost worth it in of itself and although Calen wasn’t terribly wealthy he had just gotten a substantial bonus from his dancing and the hunting contracts came in often enough so he could make these sorts of gestures. But there, of course, was always a way to make money in taverns you just needed to know where to look and how to get everyone's attention. And luckily for Calen, he had already finished stage two.

The darts table seemed to be the most likely culprit, cries a little too loud for there to just be pride on the line and the awkward shuffling which suggested something changing hands, something they didn’t want others to see, something Calen could work with. Sipping slowly at his drink, already his baser instincts were challenging his control and Calen wanted nothing more to drink until he could drink no more, well not nothing… Having enshrined himself as the bar favourite patron for at least the next round Calen managed to easily enrol himself in the game of darts. All that was at stake was money which was a little disappointed although more because Calen had gotten his hopes up rather than the men and women involved looked like they would be into anything harder but money would do for now. Calen threw the first game to ease himself into the new crowd, no need to chase everyone away too quickly, but after that started taking these players for all they were worth.

While waiting for his turn to throw again Calen turned his attention to the rest of the bar, he had too focused on making a good entrance to pay much attention to specifics other than what was directly in front of him. What he had been told of this place sung true and it did definitely feel and look like an old-timey pub or at least what the movies showed them to be… which was probably a bit better than they actually were. Catching his attention was the bar front where two seeming strangers seemed to be starting up a conversation. Best of luck Sir. Calen thought to himself as he raised his glass in salute to the black haired half to encourage his complete misreading of the situation. Calen was seriously projecting.
No criticism is too harsh so hit me with your best shot.

Calen Shrike - ASTC - First Year Beacon.

Saffron de Cortez - SALT - Third Year Atlas.

Amarant Lovis - (formerly of)ACCE - Headmaster of Atlas Academy

Ramalia - RASB - First Year Shade

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« Reply #3 on: March 05, 2019, 11:31:56 AM »
Gram had honestly not paid much mind to the incredibly flamboyant man that had thrown the last round. Although he had very much appreciated the refill, this person was trying way to hard to stick out of the crowd. To Gram it felt fake, like a costume (which it probably was), not real or authentic. Needless to say, he had so far not bothered interacting with that person and from his current position didn't plan to either. It was the little spark of judgment, the speck of prejudice that he allowed himself to have.
This new arrival, however, dressed mysteriously and way less crazy, seemed worth a talk, even though he did in fact come out here with intentions of acquiring goods that would otherwise be a lot harder to acquire. With an interested smile, he looked up from the drink and nodded. "I always am. But right now? More than usual. What about you? You... stick out.", he asked, his voice somewhat shakey and nervous. It wasn't exactly this encounter that made him nervous but rather the people around him, the amount of people. There were many of them, the bar seemed to get busier by the minute and he was usually a lot more intoxicated by this point so he usually hadn't really noticed. It was an incredibly stressful experience and thinking about it did not exactly help with his stress levels. Without thinking properly how this might come off, Gram decided to down the rest of his drink. To obersing individuals, a tiny cloud of purple gas exiting his nose as he exhaled afterwards would probably seem weird, followed by a strange scent, similar to that of jasmin blossoms but stronger, slightly heavier and a bit more uncomfortable, surrounding Gram. He only gave an apologetic look to Lucas. "I'm sorry, I'm not great at... this..." He gestured to the cround surrounding them and the amount of noise that was actually flaring up once one would focus on it.
Gram MacConkey 2nd Year Beacon Student and biohazard of Team ALGA

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2019, 12:19:12 AM »
”No offense, but that’s rich coming from a guy with pink hair,” Lucas couldn’t help but snark the stranger’s comment.  Then again, he probably does stand out here, considering his clothes.  It probably doesn’t help he forgot to pull his hood down when he walked in, so he might as well fix that at the very least.

”Anyways,” he says after taking a sip from his drink, ”I guess I do stick out a bit.  I’m new in town, and I was tryin’ to get a feel for the city.  Do you—uh,” he paused mid-sentence as he watched the pink-haired man down his drink.  His keen eyes caught the puff of strangely-colored smoke coming out of the stranger’s mouth, and Lucas subtly lowered his hand towards the lantern strapped to his waist, quickly deducing the strange phenomenon as a semblance.

But his conversation partner quickly apologized and gestured out to the rest of the bar, causing Lucas to examine the people in it more closely.  The first thing he noticed was a strange boy in what has got to be the most gaudy outfit he has ever seen in his life raising a glass in his general direction, prompting Lucas to raise an eyebrow in utter confusion.  However, the foreigner’s eyes quickly scan over the rest of the bar, taking note of the number of patrons and the likely cause of his fellow’s nervousness.

”Ah, crowds.  I don’t really like them, either.  Figured this place would be quieter than it is, but what can you do?” Lucas says in response, his arm coming back to rest on the counter. 
Smokey Emberstone Beacon 1st Year and the Immovable Gunslinger of Team BSSM "I've got more than enough firepower to beat you" "You've only got one bullet!" "Like I said, more than enough"

Aurelia Lumen Beacon 3rd year and the Warhorse of Team (TBD)  "Lay down your weapons, lest you wish to taste my steel!"

Wabul "Toast" Paka Shade 1st year and the Acrobatic Swashbuckler of Team (TBD)  "Hey, I'm gonna go jump off a bridge, who's with me?"

Lucas Meridiem Haven 4th year and the Hermit of Team (TBD)  "What's so great about 'bittersweet'?"

Clara Meridiem Beacon 1st year and the Blast Magician of Team (TBD) "No one likes just plain ol' bitter"

Hexcodes:
515151
FFD700
E55812
CCE9AE

Kingnoname1

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« Reply #5 on: March 08, 2019, 04:17:58 AM »
Everything seemed to be going from good to better for Calen, integrating well within the group of dart players despite his dress and mannerisms he managed to win them over with free drinks and the occasional biting commentary. As talented as some of the individuals he was going up against were they could be no real match for Calen and his skills earnt in brutal combat against the Grimm and other such vicious threats. Again Calen had purchased another round for the bar using up much of his winnings which encouraged another patron to find their generosity, hopefully satisfying the bartender who must be aware on some level the quasi-legal gambling which was going on in his establishments. It caused more cheers and although Calen continued to smile warmly and accept and give gifts, or at least as warmly as the gaunt boy was capable of, but he was still drinking his first glass of sherry. He knew he was quite a lightweight when it came to alcohol and although he was sure it would be a pleasant enough night to spend blackout drunk there were more important things he was hoping to do and competing against drunk opponents was never an advantage the Calen turned down.

There was a fine line to walk for Calen, taking as much money as possible without overly angering others or making them realise it wasn’t really a smart decision to continue gambling with someone who was clearly more talented at darts. As much as Calen enjoyed the game of pulling his fellows along like fish hooked on a line it still hurt his pride to lose a game even if it was a purpose. As such Calen hadn’t been very successful in becoming a beloved vacuum cleaner of everyone’s lien, perhaps it never had a real chance but Calen was still disappointed. Nothing huge had broken out yet, some harsh words and saw sharp glares from both his fellow competitors as well as the bartender. Despite all the extra drinks being ordered the bartender seemed to have an annoyingly moral sense of responsibility to his customers and had clearly identified Calen as a trouble maker. Not that he could do anything immediately, Calen was still the new darling and pride would keep the drinkers taking their issues to the bartender yet, kind of like the adult version of tattling to the teacher.

After a particularly loud outburst which even got a few words of censure from the bartender, Calen offered to pay for another drink and a meal to give the ‘offending’ woman some time to collect herself. Neither the woman nor the bartender were really convinced by Calen’s performance but the former wasn’t going to turn away free food and the latter still wasn’t going to intervene without someone else's request. Sensing his luck turning at least for the moment Calen decided he needed to wait a bit and let the heat cool off a bit before going back in so he bowed out on a pretty big loss, finished his drink and more or less graciously bowed out of the competition. Once again free to look around the bar Calen found little seemed to have changed, maybe he had been moving much to fast but remembering the pair Calen had encouraged he was glad they seemed to have broken the ice. Calen was content to sit down alone and let his mind wander for a bit, trying to soak in as much of the atmosphere as well as any carelessly discarded secrets. Despite his initial misgivings and actions in clear violation of the pubs express purpose Calen did enjoy the place, which was probably why he took such pleasure in twisting it against itself.
No criticism is too harsh so hit me with your best shot.

Calen Shrike - ASTC - First Year Beacon.

Saffron de Cortez - SALT - Third Year Atlas.

Amarant Lovis - (formerly of)ACCE - Headmaster of Atlas Academy

Ramalia - RASB - First Year Shade

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2019, 03:48:26 AM »
Gram nodded at Lucas with a slightly crooked smile. " Yeah there are things I enjoy more than this but sometimes necessity calls for uncomfortable choices." He shrugged and ran his left right index over the slightly sticky rim of the glass. "Also... Pink hair is less noticeable than a turtleneck in this part of town, I feel like. Anyway... You said you were new in town? What brings you here and where do you hail from?" Gram decided to go with it and kill some time until his contact person would arrive. Downing the drink did provide him with a slight burst of confidence, luckily. It was definitely not his prefered way of dealing with his crowd issues but it was an effective one. With a quick motion, he turned his bar stool so he would face Lucas now, leaning on the counter with one arm.
In his periferal vision, he could see and mostly hear agitated people around the flamboyant tryhard and internally rolled his eyes. In a night like this, he didn't need the mood of the people in the bar to be on edge. He was rather relieved when the young man seemed to be able to defuse the situation rather quickly. Still, it was quite annoying to Gram. Quickly though, his attention shifted back towards his current conversation partner, awaiting his answer. Smalltalk was definitely not Gram's greatest strength but he was willing to listen to this mysterious stranger's tale.
Gram MacConkey 2nd Year Beacon Student and biohazard of Team ALGA

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2019, 02:57:03 AM »
Wait, his turtleneck is what sticks out?  Lucas’s black turtleneck that’s underneath his green and yellow coat, the same turtleneck whose namesake collar is covered by a bandana?  Huh, maybe turtlenecks do stand out here.  Good to know, I guess he thought to himself.  At the very least, he could file this information away for future use if he ever needed to blend into Vale.

But that’s not why he’s here, now, and as Lucas returns to the conversation, he answers, ”I’m from Mistral, and I’m here on business.”  Personal business is still business, right?  It’s not like he’s here for his own pleasure, after all. 

”A friend told me this was a good place for a quiet drink, but…” he continued with a white lie as he looks back to the other side of the bar where agitated patrons were giving annoyed side-eyes to the man in the costume.  He had just bought all the bargoers a refill on their drinks a few moments ago, but judging from the looks of the bartender and a few over-heard mutterings, he was slowly losing his status as the darling of the establishment. 

Like the bartender, Lucas had also identified the flamboyantly dressed individual as a trouble-maker, and there’s quite a bit of evidence.  First off, the bartender’s disposition marks him as a newcomer to the place.  If he were a regular, there would have almost certainly been a bit of small talk when he ordered drinks, most likely a few quips over his clothes. 

The second bit of evidence is the reaction of the patrons.  Given his rather unique attire, it’s damn near impossible to mistake him for someone else.  So, since the patrons don’t immediately recognize him as a hustler and end up reluctantly handing him their hard-earned lien, Lucas develops a theory regarding the stand-out individual:  he’s a cocky kid trying to make a quick buck by lulling intoxicated and gullible people into losing their money.

There’s just one problem with his theory:  if he were just a typical swindler, he would have cleared out the pockets of as many people as possible and left just as quickly as he came in.  However, he seems to have lost his most recent game, which can only imply one of two things.  One, he isn’t very good at conning people, or two, he isn’t aiming to just take money.  And that realization suddenly makes the costumed culprit the most interesting thing to talk about in the room.

”What do you suppose that guy’s deal is?” he asks his conversation partner, wondering if he had any additional insight.
Smokey Emberstone Beacon 1st Year and the Immovable Gunslinger of Team BSSM "I've got more than enough firepower to beat you" "You've only got one bullet!" "Like I said, more than enough"

Aurelia Lumen Beacon 3rd year and the Warhorse of Team (TBD)  "Lay down your weapons, lest you wish to taste my steel!"

Wabul "Toast" Paka Shade 1st year and the Acrobatic Swashbuckler of Team (TBD)  "Hey, I'm gonna go jump off a bridge, who's with me?"

Lucas Meridiem Haven 4th year and the Hermit of Team (TBD)  "What's so great about 'bittersweet'?"

Clara Meridiem Beacon 1st year and the Blast Magician of Team (TBD) "No one likes just plain ol' bitter"

Hexcodes:
515151
FFD700
E55812
CCE9AE

Kingnoname1

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Re: Illumination and Concealment [Open, Limited 3/5]
« Reply #8 on: March 14, 2019, 08:44:10 AM »
Taking another few sips of his sherry Calen went about his brief break from gambling to partake in the more normal activities of a bar. Small talk to get to know the lay of the land inside the bar as well as not to look too awkward sitting by himself all this time. Ratcheting up the charm Calen easily managed to easily get a few laughs and conversations going while keeping an eye on the bar as a whole, in particular, the ongoing darts game and the bar itself. The former was for rather obvious reasons; to know the game was progressing, to see who is winning or losing the most as well as double checking when tempers have calmed down. The later had more sinister motives, in a pub like this the bartender’s word was law and if he decided he was gone then there was little Calen could do about it. As such it was important to try to get the man back onside and hopefully showing that he was keeping his nose out of trouble for a time the less attention the bartender would leave him be. There was also a small prickle at the back of his neck as Calen felt he was becoming the topic of conversation around the small pub. The realisation made him smile.

Chatting along with his fellow drinkers Calen managed to pick up a lot of little bits of information about the bar and the people who frequent it. Some of it small things like what meals to order, irrelevant to Calen given his approach to food, but also relevant things like when the bartender leaves to check on the cooking or bring in a delivery. For most of the drinkers, it was simply something to order their drinks around but for Calen every scrap of information was another weapon in his arsenal. There were benign topics as well, his clothing was a common one but Calen was quick witted and his listeners drunk enough to always turn every new answer into a roar of laughter.
No criticism is too harsh so hit me with your best shot.

Calen Shrike - ASTC - First Year Beacon.

Saffron de Cortez - SALT - Third Year Atlas.

Amarant Lovis - (formerly of)ACCE - Headmaster of Atlas Academy

Ramalia - RASB - First Year Shade