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Changeling: Malibu Dream House (Actual Play)

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  • Yeah, Luna is helping best she can, but even Insincere Marguerite seems unaware of how messed up he is. And yes, Stasia is having a good time of it.


    Onyx Path Moderator
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    This is my mod voice. This is my goth voice.
    [Geist: Balance of Shadows ][ Vampire: The Conspiracy of Hrad Černá Hora ][ Scion: Bohemian Front][Changeling: Malibu Dream House] [Demon: Night Train Detective Agency] [WoD: The Golden Eagle]

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    • I was wondering. With Luna she was taken as a male, reshaped, and came back female. Has this ever occurred with a changelings ethnicity? Be it mask or mien?

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      • Probably, but let's hope we don't encounter thst


        A god is just a monster you kneel to. - ArcaneArts, Quoting "Fall of Gods"

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        • I'd say probably yes, but I am not going to go there. I will say some Changelings, like Tommy or Monica, are only recognizable as their ethnicity because of their Masks. But I am not really looking to explore that.


          Onyx Path Moderator
          Forum Rules
          This is my mod voice. This is my goth voice.
          [Geist: Balance of Shadows ][ Vampire: The Conspiracy of Hrad Černá Hora ][ Scion: Bohemian Front][Changeling: Malibu Dream House] [Demon: Night Train Detective Agency] [WoD: The Golden Eagle]

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          • Fair enough. I was just curious. Thanks.

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            • The Motley this time goes shopping, then clubbing. What kind of game is this, anyway?

              Calamity’s Journal covers the past two sessions

              Session LXXVIII

              Lorelei’s Diary

              The two days or so that have passed since my last entry have included a bit of the old “take the bitter with the sweet” life lesson, but by and large have been quite enjoyable. Had a night off, got to cut loose a bit, repaired a damaged friendship (I hope), and even made some new friends. What’s not to like?

              The show on Tuesday night went well enough. Calamity got out there and put her own particular spin on the Nancy Sinatra classic “These Boots Are Made For Walkin’,” which was… different, to say the least. I mean, her performance was amazing as usual, but I don’t think Miss Sinatra ever intended for the song to have that particular subtext. Still, Calamity has a niche and she knows how to exploit it.

              My own number was a little more saccharine; an inspirational ballad by Bette Midler called “Wind Beneath My Wings.” Yes, I’m still exploiting the bird-girl theme whenever I can, so sue me. Plus, well… it was a chance for me to tell everyone how much I rely on D without really saying it directly and embarrassing the hell out of her. And it’s true, too… I don’t think I could have accomplished half of what I have over the past year without her in my corner. My fiancée keeps me strong when things look grim, she lifts me up when I’m at my lowest, and she keeps me sane when things get crazy.

              God I love her.

              So that one was maybe a little more sweet than sexy, but I think it still went over pretty well. The audience seemed to like it, at any rate. I’m guessing the sparkly evening gown slit up to my waist on one side probably didn’t hurt, though.

              As usual, I hobnobbed with the crowd for a while. I tried to stop by every table for at least a minute or two, but there were a few conversations of note sprinkled in there as well. First, most of the motley and I spoke with Corvus and Corbin, the two Night Court changelings who had invited us to enjoy their club in LA the following evening. They seemed nice enough, though Corbin was substantially creepy. In any case, they gave us all VIP passes to their club (enough for the motley, Luna, and Stasia) and vouchers for a free drink each. I made sure to thank them for their kindness before moving along.

              Felicity was there to see Marguerite, and I stopped by her table to chat for a bit. While I was honestly interested in seeing how she was doing, she quickly deduced that I also had an ulterior motive for speaking with her.

              “So… what can I do for you, Lori?” she asked with a sympathetic look in her eyes.

              I sighed and looked down. “I was wondering if you could tell me how Rowan’s doing,” I said softly. “I haven’t heard from her in a few days, and she was really upset when she left here, and Marguerite told me…”

              “…that I was looking after her while she got drunk the other night?” Felicity asked, taking my hand. “It’s true. She was… at a low point, then. But I think she’s going to be all right if you give her a little time.”

              “Should I…” I started, and then stammered for a moment. “Do you think she’d like to talk to me? Or would that just do more harm than good?”

              Felicity shook her head. “I’d give her a little space for now,” she advised. “I’ll keep an eye on her, and I promise that I’ll tell you as soon as she’s ready, okay?”

              “Okay,” I whispered. “Thanks.”

              “Lori…” she began, then seemed to reconsider.

              “What?” I asked.

              She sighed again. “I don’t know how this is going to turn out, and I want you to know that I truly hope it has a happy ending. But you need to be prepared for the possibility that you and Rowan may not be involved any more when the smoke clears.”

              I nodded, and I’m sure there was a little shimmer in my eyes. “I know,” I said after a moment. “I hate it, but I know. She needs something from me that… well, it’s something I just can’t give her. It might have been better if I’d never gotten together with her in the first place…”

              “Don’t say that,” Felicity responded instantly. “Rowan has been so happy since she started dating you… and I know for a fact that she wouldn’t give up a minute of that time if she had the chance. She was okay with sharing you with other women… but now that you’re getting married, well that’s different.” Her eyes flicked down toward the ring, and she smiled again. “Congratulations, by the way.”

              “Thanks,” I said, smiling in turn. What can I say, even when I’m super depressed the thought that I’m engaged to the love of my life is enough to drive the clouds away.

              “I know that you and de la Rocha have an open relationship, but Rowan… she’s different,” Felicity continued. “I don’t know for certain, but I think she was Taken a long time ago. Like, further back than you were. She’d see continuing to date you as forcing you to break your marriage vows, and she’s not willing to do that.”

              “I understand,” I said sadly. “Thanks again for looking after her, Felicity. You’re a good friend. And I feel just awful that my engagement is causing her such pain…”

              “Don’t,” she said sharply. “Don’t think like that, Lori. You should be over the moon about your situation. Don’t let Rowan’s issues taint what you’ve found. Rowan doesn’t want that… I think deep down that’s one of the reasons she’s keeping her distance for now.”

              “Okay,” I said. “You’re right. And I am over the moon. I can’t even pretend otherwise.”

              We chatted for a little while longer, but I could tell that her attention was focused on her impending evening with Marguerite. At one point she not-so-subtly hinted that it might be possible for me to join the two of them, but I regretfully declined her offer, feeling that Julia needed me more on that particular evening. But who knows what the future might hold?

              Another probably-healthy-but-not-so-much-fun conversation followed that one. I made my way back to the Girlfriend Table and planted myself on D’s lap as per usual, and found myself sitting next to Desiree. She greeted me with a subdued “hi,” and I looked her up and down and sort of sighed. “Can I talk to you in private for a minute, Desiree?” I asked quietly.

              “Sure,” she said, and the two of us made our way to one of the private rooms.

              “So you’ve probably noticed that my attitude toward you has been a little distant lately,” I said by way of an opening.

              She nodded glumly. “We’d talked about going out to take in a show together a couple of weeks ago, but you haven’t seemed interested lately,” she said after a moment.

              I closed my eyes and took a couple of deep breaths. “When I found out about your… ‘arrangement’ with Marguerite,” I began.

              Insincere Marguerite,” she said automatically.

              I was in no mood. “I have special privileges,” I snapped back. She recoiled slightly, and I gathered my wits. “Sorry,” I said gently, taking her hand, “this isn’t easy for me either. Anyway, when I found out about it, I was furious. Marguerite could be exiled or executed if anyone else discovered what you’ve done. Hell, she’s already been exiled from one Freehold for what amounts to the same thing.”

              “I have no wish to cause Insincere Marguerite any trouble,” Desiree said fervently, “but this seemed like the best way to protect you… to protect all of you.”

              “I know,” I said. “I know you did it for the right reasons. And I know you and Gawain and Calamity are working hard to make it unnecessary. But I’ve just been so worried and scared and angry that I don’t know what to do with myself. And I’m in a relationship with Marguerite, so I can’t focus all of that on her.”

              “So you focused it on me instead,” Desiree said, nodding her understanding. “It makes sense. I’d rather you be mad at me than at Insincere Marguerite. It’s not her fault.”

              “But it’s not fair, and it’s not right,” I continued. “You’re my friend, Desiree. I don’t like what you’re doing, but it doesn’t change that fact. And being mad at you for the past few weeks has been making me miserable. I’m tired of it.”

              She looked genuinely distressed that this had been upsetting me. “I’m so sorry, Lori. If I’d known how much this was bothering you, maybe we could have talked about it or something. What can I do to help?”

              “Just… can we just forget about it, and go back to the way things were between us?” I asked plaintively. “I mean, I don’t want to forget about the situation… I still want to work toward resolving it. But I want you back as a friend, if you’re willing.”

              “Of course,” she said with a slight shimmer in her eyes. And then we were both crying and hugging and maybe even kissing the teensiest bit.

              “Still up for that show sometime?” I asked when we had both composed ourselves once more.

              “I’ll look into what’s playing in the area,” she promised.

              We walked back to the Girlfriend Table chatting and laughing like we used to, and rejoined the company. I think she might have ended up in the big bed with Maria, Julia and me, but she had an appointment with Gawain and Calamity for more Dream Therapy. A part of me was disappointed; I haven’t shared a bed with Desiree since before The Trouble™ started. But the greater part of my psyche understood that she really is dedicated to ending the situation between her and Marguerite, and that made me happy.

              Sex Breakfast the following morning saw many of us abuzz with excitement over our impending trip to the club called The Unseelie Court. Marguerite, Julia and I decided to head out and pick up some new outfits for the club. Maria – God bless her – smirked as she told us she couldn’t join us because she had to go to work. Much to my surprise, Calamity opted to come with us… which maybe had something to do with the fact that Stasia was coming along as well. Jacob, Luna, and Gawain went off on their own expedition.

              Shopping was fun, and though Julia didn’t buy anything for herself (she chipped in with a few of us to get something cute and sexy for Stasia), I think we all ended up with outfits that complemented our natural strengths well. The Unseelie Court was described as a sort of Goth/Punk/Industrial club, so we decided to dress accordingly. Maria opted to go in her usual punk threads, and Julia wore her “Dark Belle” dress. Hmmm… Belle Noir, maybe? But that would be “Black Beauty,” which aside from being the name of a horse, is also inaccurate, as the dress is dark purple. Oh well.

              I chose an ensemble that I thought was fetching, though both Calamity and Marguerite’s outfits were more daring than my own. The body of the outfit was actually similar to one of the outfits I often wear when I’m performing… a shiny leather number shaped sort of like a one-piece bathing suit, but with a built-in corset. This one is midnight blue rather than black. I also picked up a pair of thigh-high heeled boots and long gloves in matching blue leather, and sheathed my arms and legs in tight fishnets. Not to toot my own horn, but I thought I looked pretty damned hot.

              The drive to the club was not much fun, with so many of us crammed into Gawain’s van (I was not going to leave the ‘vette in an unfamiliar parking lot in LA until I had at least scoped the place out a little). Stasia was adorably nervous, asking several pointed questions about how she could let unfamiliar changelings know that she was under our protection. We did the best we could to reassure her that everything would be fine.

              The club itself, on the other hand, turned out to be a lot of fun. They had plenty of space to dance, and these neat catwalks running over everything to give a bit of variety to the area. There was also a colossal cage set on a track, which people would occasionally climb into and send soaring over the dance floor. It was a great attention-getter, but perhaps predictably I opted not to try it out. No amount of attention is worth the nightmares I’d have if I voluntarily closed myself up in what was essentially a giant birdcage again… even though rationally I knew that there were all sorts of safety precautions in place to prevent people from getting trapped in it.

              Our hosts greeted us as soon as we arrived, and introduced us to the rest of their motley and a few other friendly Night Courtiers. By and large they seemed to be a decent bunch (though Corbin was still mondo creepy). Aside from her and Corvus, there were two other people I recognized there. One was Salk, who hangs out in Malibu and Santa Monica a lot and is a frequent visitor to the Dream House. The other was a young woman named Stripe who’d been at the Dream House a few days prior. I hadn’t gotten the opportunity to speak with her on that occasion, because that was the night that Dad dropped by to see the show.

              Stripe seems okay, though it’s obvious that she has a rebellious side that would give my love a run for her money. Marguerite spoke with her more than I did, as I was otherwise occupied for most of the evening. I heard later that she likes to express her disdain for authority and conformity by having sex in churches. And okay, yes, I have done that myself on more than one occasion… back in Defiance I might as well have stored a sleeping bag behind the baptismal font, as a matter of fact. But the thought of how that sort of behavior would hurt my Dad just turns me cold now.

              There was another man who introduced himself as V. He was a decent looking guy, and I might have thrown a few subconscious flirts his way, but a few of my friends seemed amused by his peculiar moniker. Someone – I don’t remember precisely who – asked if he was called “V” because he like to put on a Guy Fawkes mask and blow up government buildings (I didn’t get it). He shook his head and explained that people called him that because he could voluntarily shed the outer layer of his skin, revealing a lizard-like countenance underneath (I didn’t get that one either). He seemed nice enough, and the two of us chatted for a while when I dropped by the bar to pick up my free drink.

              There were two other ladies present. One called herself Neon, and was an attractive young woman who seemed to glow with an inner purple light. I later learned that she had shared a durance with none other than Master Darke. She had been located in a seedy club, but hadn’t been a dancer or a bartender or even a hat-check girl… she had been a light fixture. Go figure. In any case, she was friendly enough, and a pretty good dancer to boot. I danced with her myself a few times, but I think she really hit it off with D, as the two of them spent a lot of the evening dancing together. Maybe the two of us should invite her to join us in Malibu some evening…

              And why wasn’t I even the teensiest bit jealous of my love’s attention? Because I had my own distraction, of course! The young woman calling herself Brightstar was perky, energetic, and friendly to a fault… sort of my counterpart among LA’s Night Court, I guess. Though I confess I don’t think I’ll ever have that much energy. She never seemed to tire, and her performance on the dance floor seemed to be composed of almost as many balletic leaps as traditional club moves. And such leaps! Some of them carried her up to the level of the catwalks!

              Oh, and like Neon, Brightstar glowed with an inner light, though hers was golden rather than purple. Neither one of them was “on” constantly; their auras brightened and dimmed based on a timetable or stimulus I couldn’t quite identify. Though I noticed that when one of them started glowing brightly, the other tended to follow in short order… and occasionally their auras pulsed in sync with each other, often to the beat of whatever song was blaring from the club’s speakers. It seemed obvious that the two of them were very close, though I didn’t get a romantic vibe from them.

              In any case, Brightstar and I got along really well, and though I danced with just about anyone who showed an interest (including D and Julia as well as the aforementioned V and Neon), I found myself drifting back to her side time and time again. After my first free drink was gone, I bought each of us another, and we found ourselves up on the catwalks people-watching. And then we were mostly watching each other. And then we were making out.

              She stopped me after a few minutes of passionate kissing and necking. “Wait,” she said softly.

              “Everything okay?” I asked. “Or did you want to take this to one of the back rooms…?”

              “No!” she said sharply, then her look softened. “No, not right now. Look, Lorelei… I think I need a little air. Don’t take this the wrong way, but… if I let this go on any longer, I’m going to end up sleeping with you. And I don’t do that with people I just met… no matter how much I like them. Okay?”

              I smiled, chuckled, and gave her a peck on the cheek. “No problem, Brightsar,” I said. “I’m sure we’ll have plenty of other chances. I don’t want you to do anything you’re not comfortable with, okay? I can wait until you’re ready… and if you decide you’re never going to be ready, that’s okay too. I think we’ve proven tonight that we have enough in common to make the friends thing work.”

              She gave my hand a gentle squeeze. “Thanks,” she said after a moment. “Now… I’m gonna go outside and clear my head for a few minutes. Save me another dance before you leave?”

              “Count on it,” I said, tipping her a wink. She left, and I headed back down to the dance floor to take a couple of spins with D and Neon.

              In other news, I think Calamity spent part of the evening enjoying the intimate caresses of Corbin. She really needs to get this Leechfinger fetish of hers under control, as she looked pretty ragged (but happy) when she returned to the dance floor an hour or so later. Although, come to think of it, I’m not sure Corbin is a Leechfinger… she could just be a sexual predator. Either way though, one of these days this fixation of hers is going to get her into a situation we can’t get her out of.

              As for the others… I think Stasia enjoyed the club as well. She was a bit less energetic than most of us, but she danced and drank and stood under the catwalks waiting for girls wearing skirts to walk by above her, and overall seemed to be having the time of her life. I didn’t notice much going on around Gawain, though I know he danced a fair amount as well, in his own Gawainish way. Jacob and Luna held themselves aloof for the most part, sticking to the balconies and the less crowded areas of the club. Luna cited the need to protect her delicate wings as the reason, but I’ve always found that the Mask tends to keep mortals away from my own wings subconsciously, so that might just have been her excuse to play the wallflower.

              So we all danced and hobnobbed and drank and hooked up until we were exhausted, then we piled back in the cars and headed back to Malibu. During the ride home, I mostly allowed myself to settle into Maria’s embrace. Once we got home, the two of us joined Marguerite and Julia in the big bed, but we were all pretty exhausted, so there was more love than lust on display. I let myself melt into their arms and slept like the dead until late morning. And honestly, I can’t think of a better way to end an evening.

              Lorelei Grace


              Calamity’s Little Black Book

              Tuesday, December 9th
              Nine years, six months, thirteen days
              Days without stabbing: 5

              I am a very contented little monster right now. Gawain and Becky are truly amazing. It is never easy to slip away from them but there’s no reason why they should be up before dawn because I’ve got therapy. By the time we were all done, it wasn’t worth dozing off. Well, honestly I am still leery about accidentally cutting Beautiful in the night but it was a good excuse and now that I know that Spring perk up trick it was easier to just stay up. Is it weird that I stood there and watched them shift closer to fill the void I left in the bed? Yes Calamity, it is weird, but it’s only Darkling weird, not psycho killer weird so it’s okay. I love them so much.

              Not sure if last night was about being worried they might lose me or maybe trying to distract me from the fact that Stasia was whisked off by the quad after the movies last night. I am really glad we got to spend the afternoon together at the pier. It was good (if a bit bittersweet) to start filling in all the lost years and to revisit some of the best moments of the past. I can’t help but feel a little guilty that my disappearance was the cause of so much heartache and pain for her but Stasia was quite firm about not letting me apologize for, as she put it, “being kidnapped by a god-like being from another dimension.” And when she put it that way I couldn’t really argue. (Not that I or anyone else has ever been able to argue with her when she’s got her mind set on something.) It was nice to just be with her. Just having her near again feels so right.

              And we talked about us. About how she had figured out that while I was waiting for my handsome prince she wanted a princess who forgot to lock her door. She seems to find it strange that I’m as into women as I am. I guess maybe it makes sense. I wasn’t really ‘into’ anyone yet when I was taken. I mean, I knew on a really abstract level that sex happened and all and yeah, stunt butt or not I did pay attention to that scene in Robin Hood and might have looked forward to it and re-watched it a time or two. But I had no clue just what that weird little feeling it gave was and I sure as fuck had no idea what I was supposed to actually do about it. But I still believe that if I hadn’t been taken Stasia would have been my first and quite possible my only. I really was that kind of girl back then after all. Of course, who knows what would have happened once all the hormones actually got to pumping. I have this ideal image of who I would have become and I feel so sure about it. But the truth is I don’t know. The Dr Katheryn Moss in my mind that’s married to her childhood friend Anastasia and saving lives isn’t real, she’s a character on a medical drama. And even if she was who I’d have become, it’s pointless to cry over what might have been.

              Which, I think, is where Stasia and I are. She’s been trying not to think about her own version of that future. It was a little awkward but we talked and that was good. We’ve got each other again and that’s the part that matters most to us both.

              And most of the afternoon was just fun. It was silly, but we found one of those photo booths (I wasn’t sure they still existed) and took a couple of strips. It’s strange to look at them next to that old one I found in the scrap book. So much is different and yet, you can see the same bond there. I should get them framed before Stasia leaves. (if she leaves at this point.)

              So yeah, I have plenty to talk about with Dr Emmett and for once it’s good news.

              Tuesday, December 9th
              Nine years, six months, thirteen days
              Days without stabbing: 5

              Well, this has been quite a fine day. We got back from therapy in time for sex breakfast as usual. I had to chuckle at poor Stasia, she was looking ever so slightly hazy around the edges when she came in. Not that I blame her. I had no doubt that the girls would treat her right but they clearly gave her a night she’ll never forget. She still seems a bit overwhelmed by all of this and she keeps asking questions to try to make sense of it all. So far the others haven’t found it tiresome or if they have they’ve humored her for my sake. Damn it feels so nice to have her around.

              So, there was talk of the trip to the Unseelie Court and the fact that tomorrow is also Austin’s Chestnut Party. I think I was the only one even slightly torn between those options. But after hearing about the nightclub, Stasia perked up about going along and that settled that. I mean, it’s not that I don’t trust the Night Court’s hospitality and I am sure they wouldn’t be so foolish as to harm my Stasia but best to be there personally to make sure. Also… Corbin. Sure, she is only playing at being prey to see how hard and far I’ll chase her but that doesn’t make the hunt any less fun or make me not want to do bad things to her when it’s over.

              And, of course a trip to a Goth/Industrial club means some clothes shopping for most of us, but that ended up getting put off till tomorrow since D already had a wardrobe and would be working then. So instead we ended up hitting the beach. Stasia hasn’t grokked the whole lack of winter down here and was thus quite surprised to discover it was an option but quite happily so.

              So while folks scattered to get ready, Jacob mentioned sparring. I, of course, was quite agreeable to getting in our usual workout. Even if I don’t have a ton of anger or whatnot to clear I do love a good dance and I’ll confess that once folks started to drift back down to gather and Stasia was watching I did start getting a little flashy. But Jacob never let me get careless which is part of why I enjoy our sparring. And even with my spirits soaring, I didn’t miss the fact that he was fighting almost exclusively in his older manner, not using any of the moves he’s picked up from Luna and I. It was strictly the style he learned from Rook. Normally, I would have said something but I didn’t want to try to bring it up in front of everyone. That and I am not really sure what to say to him about it. I know Rook was a brother in arms to him and even if he turned away from that life that’s not something you just forget. I know he’s not one to show his emotions at the best of times and in this case he’s got good reason to keep his pain inside. If he grieves the death of a loyalist it would raise questions about his past he doesn’t really want to deal with. I need to find the words. Make sure he knows I’ve got his back and that I’m here if he needs me. Not that I know what I can do to help and I hate that. Just have to find a quiet moment. I guess if nothing else I could bring it up Thursday while we’re alone on the way to and from the clinic. And while I am worried about him, Luna has stayed close to him since the fight. Those two really are perfect for each other and it’s clear how in love they are. Honestly, if he’s going to talk to anyone it’s most likely going to be her. But I do care and I do need to make he knows that if nothing else.

              The beach trip was full of hi-jinks and shenanigans and even a little tomfoolery. We surfed and swam (except for Julia who watched us all from the shade of her pavilion). There was laughter and fun. Towards the end of the afternoon volleyball came up but rather than splitting up we sent Lori out to round up a passel of hapless victims and we crushed them like the first act of a Bad News Bears movie or whatever random extras face off against the Harlem Globetrotters. Though they did get to watch Lori play volleyball in her bikini so I don’t really feel that bad for them.

              Then it was back to the Dream House to do the show. I rolled out These Boots Were made for Walking early since we’ll be taking tomorrow night off and I was quite pleased with how it turned out. Hard to go wrong pairing a song about boots with my whole dominatrix style. Pity Dark Kimberly wasn’t in tonight. Given her penchant for boot-worship, I am rather looking forward to seeing her reaction to it or the killer new boots I’m rocking for it. (I mean, seriously, it was a perfectly justified business expense. After all, I certainly couldn’t do a number ABOUT boots without some ab-so-fucking-lutely amazing boots now could I?)

              So yeah, everything is going right but I just can’t shake this uneasy feeling that the other shoe of Damocles is waiting to drop on my head. I know it’s silly but it just keeps creeping in. I mean, paranoia is part of being a Darkling and all but it’s more than just that. And Dr Emmett did keep asking me about how it made me feel that things were going so well and she had that Spock skeptical eyebrow thing going on that she does when I kept saying being happy made me… well happy.

              And yeah, so maybe it does also make me feel a little guilty. I’ve got Handsome and Beautiful and now I have my Stasia back and there’s this little voice that keeps telling me that I don’t deserve any of it. But that’s not how things work. The universe doesn’t keep score. Bad things happen to good people and good things happen to bad people and the world just spins on and gives zero fucks. There is no cosmic referee that’s going to play a red card on me for being happy and in love and take that away from me. No, it falls entirely on my dangerously jagged shoulders to fuck everything up…

              But this isn’t the time to let myself fall down that damn rabbit hole again. I need to be focused. Handsome and I are about to settle in with Desiree for another round of dream therapy. We’re getting close to a real breakthrough with her. She said tonight that she’s feeling more confident lately and that she likes the way that feels. We’re making a difference. We’re helping her. And I like how that feels.

              Wednesday, December 10th
              Nine years, six months, twelve days
              Days without stabbing: 6

              Well, that was a delightful adventure. My oh my but Corbin is a delightful little thing. She may not be prey but she does play the role wonderfully. All the better to lure in would be predators and turn the tables on them I’m sure. And yes, I suppose that by letting her lure me in tonight that includes me but damn she’s mighty fine bait so whatever comes of it it was fucking worth it. And I can’t deny that she is right, I do have at least a little red riding hood in me but despite how determined she seems to turn things around, I kept finding it more adorable than anything else. She is a predator, but she’s a very subtle and patient one. And while I am not saying she isn’t dangerous as all fuck I’m afraid she’s going to disappointed because I just don’t think she’s got enough it in her to be a big enough bad enough wolf to coax that side of me out. But she seems determined to try and it should be a fun ride seeing what comes next.

              The Unseelie Court is nice. If running the Dream House didn’t keep me so busy I would certainly make a habit of going, and not just to continue this cat and mouse game with Corbin. The whole motley seemed to have a good time tonight. The rest of her and Corvis’ motley seems to have made a good impression on my fellows. There were also a couple of Night Courtiers that weren’t in their circle in the club, most notably Salk.

              One of them, a girl called alternatively Neon or Electra, is apparently from the same durance as Darke. She claims she was the lighting at the sleazy jazz club there (hence the nickname). It would be interesting to hear more about it, though that’s never an easy topic to bring up with one of us.

              Lori seemed to hit it off with the other illuminated member of the group, one Brightstar. She introduced herself as the perky one and then spent the night in a hyperactive frenzy that would have exhausted one of those fiery dudes from Labyrinth. (Though, to be fair, she did apparently keep all of her body parts attached at all times.)

              Marguerite paired off with Strype but choose to molest her on one of the couches rather than get a room. And that led to me mentioning to Lori what she’d said about her hobby of defiling churches which she did not seem to find amusing in the least. But I have no doubt that even if we can’t insure she doesn’t get around to Lori’s Dad’s church (and trying to stop her would likely only make it much more appealing and raise it’s place on her list) I have no doubt that Marguerite will have the decency or at least the compassion to not be involved.

              The others had a good time as well, even if they didn’t pair off with a particular host. Jacob and Luna watched from the catwalks and danced together on one of the far less crowded elevated dance floors a bit. Stasia enjoyed herself as did Gawain. I did actually do some dancing (after Corbin and I were through with each other) and couldn’t resist trying out the raised cage. I even fired it up and rode it across the room while I showed off my moves after I had a couple of drinks.

              And now we’re all back at the Dream House. I am a touch buzzed still and feeling pretty damn pleased with myself. But I am also rather looking forward to curling up with just my Knight and being able to completely relax and sleep in his arms.

              You know, at some point later tonight.

              Maybe.

              I mean… I DO know the secret of poofing now...


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              • Jacob’s Journal

                After we got back from the beach we all got cleaned up and ready for the show. I wrote a bit in this book and stocked the bar while others got into costumes and went over last minute rehearsals for the show. I suppose that I took a bit longer than was strictly necessary to stock the bar, but I think I had gotten my fill of being social at the beach. I needed some quiet time before the crowds showed up for the show tonight.

                Hailey came to the bar, as has become her habit of late. We made small talk for a bit, but nothing too extensive. Luna was of course there. I don’t know what I’d do without my Luna honestly. The past few days she has been my anchor. She seems to know when I need quiet and when I need someone to listen to me vent. I sometimes feel like I’m taking advantage. I haven’t been super supportive of her the last few days, it’s mainly been her helping me. I don’t know what I can do to help her. I don’t know if she needs support for anything right now. I should probably ask her.

                Corvus and Corbin came to the show tonight and by unspoken agreement all members of the motley went over to the table that they were sitting at and offered our thanks for the passes to their club. We said that we were planning on taking them up on their offer to visit tomorrow night. They were friendly and amenable to us visiting. I think that they were happy that we were going to take them up on their offer to see their place.

                During a lull, I texted Elena to see how she was doing. She replied that she was doing well and let me know that Natasha had moved out of her apartment recently. I think she was happy to have her place back to herself, though I know that she had become pretty close to the Ukrainian girl in the few days that she spent there. We chatted a bit more about general things before I had to get back to work. I am happy that I can talk to Elena as my sister instead of hiding who I am. I should probably thank Insincere Marguerite and Lorelei for pushing me to telling Elena who I really am. Hopefully I can do some regular social things with my sister in the future. No more Loyalists hunting me down, just something fun. Maybe next time we do something social as a motley I’ll see if Elena wants to join us. I’m sure she’d like to go to the beach or go roller skating. Maybe I can see if she wants to go for a hike in the woods nearby. We used to do it all the time as kids. Maybe we can take that up again.

                The only other thing of note that really happened tonight was that Gawain and Calamity were going to work with Desiree on more dream healing. I think that they are making progress which is good. I am hoping that Desiree will be able to function on her own and not need to have a “keeper” anymore. I want more than anything for Marguerite to be freed from that particular oath. It is not good for either of them to keep that going for too long. I think it’s taking its toll just be being in place. Not to mention the longer that they have this agreement in place the more chances there are that someone outside the motley finds out about it and then the real trouble would start. I doubt the freehold would be willing to overlook the agreement they have even with extenuating circumstances revealed.

                **** **** ****

                Breakfast went without a hitch. Gawain cooked as usual and I made coffee for everyone that wanted it. Calamity arrived as preparations were underway and seemed to be in a good mood after her morning meditation and training with White Maria. I really think that the meditation in particular is doing Calamity some good. She seems to be on a much more even keel than she had been in the past, and I think that’s a direct result of her mornings with White Maria. I hope that she continues to see her. It combined with her therapy sessions should do good things for her psyche.

                During breakfast Stasia continued her twenty questions and asked us what kind of faeries we were. Like if we were to open up a Froud book on faeries are we any of the kinds listed there. We tried to explain that it doesn’t really work that way and told her again about Kiths and Seemings. We also explained a bit about what kind of abilities we all had. Some were more forthcoming that others on that front, and I’m including myself in that. Calamity was very detailed in explaining all the powers and abilities that she had, going into detail about the different contracts and such. The others were a little less detailed than that but everyone shared something about themselves. For my part I mentioned that I have control over snow and ice and pretty much left it at that. I am not one to go into details on all of my abilities with a stranger. Granted Stasia is Calamity’s childhood friend, and I stress the word childhood, but we still don’t know her all that well. She doesn’t seem to be gathering information so she can use it against her later, she seems to be honestly curious. She does have some rather specific questions sometimes, which makes me think that she’s comparing us to some preconceived ideas that she already has in her head about the fae.

                After breakfast some of the ladies brought up the idea of going shopping for our visit to the club tonight. I wasn’t aware that we needed new clothes for this trip, but it sounded like there was a specific type of dress that people would be wearing at the dance club and we should probably try and fit in. I think the term Industrial Goth came up. So, it ended up that Lori, Calamity, Stasia, Insincere Marguerite and Julia all went shopping for clothes. They ended up being gone for a good long while. The rest of us, me, Luna and Gawain went shopping on our own, but took far less time. After I looked up industrial goth on my phone I knew what I was looking for. So did Luna and Gawain. We went in, got what we were looking for and left. We even had time when we got back to play some video games and spar in the backyard. It was fun to spar with Gawain again. He doesn’t usually join me and Calamity after our therapy sessions, so it was a nice surprise to spar with him today. The same goes for Luna. I hadn’t practiced with her in a while either. So it was fun.

                After the ladies got back from their shopping trip we all got dressed up and piled into Gawain’s van for the trip to the club, the Unseelie Court. When we got to the club we discovered that we already knew at least some of the guests there. We saw Corvus and Corbin, Salk and Della Strype. There was also a smaller secondary bar where it seemed a majority of the other fae guests were hanging out. We introduced ourselves to the group and they introduced themselves to us. They seemed nice. Most of them were Night Court I believe. I know at least that Corvus, Corbin, Salk and Della are all Night Court. There was a young lady named Brightstar that was a particularly bouncy Night Courtier. The others were more laid back. It also turns out that there is a young lady named Electra that came from the same durance as Darke. She apparently was a neon light in a sleazy club in Arcadia. For that reason I think some of the others also call her Neon.

                We also received a tour of the club, including the private back rooms and multiple dance floors. I think it is a pretty well laid out place and definitely takes good advantage of the space they have available.

                We all broke up after that into smaller groups and started dancing or socializing. Luna and I went up to the catwalks after we’d gotten our one free drink and watched the crowd of people dancing below us. I know that Luna appreciates smaller groups of people and probably didn’t mind being away from all the people that would be bumping up against her wings as they danced. So, we people-watched for a while. It was fun. As we watched Calamity flirted with Corbin and eventually went back to one of the back rooms. I don’t really have any doubt what the two of them were up to back there. The others mainly mingled with our new friends. The was one of the L.A Courtiers that was not really dancing though. He was just called V by the others. He mainly stayed back and watched everyone in our motley carefully. I do not know what his intentions were, but he did not act on anything that he saw. At least on this visit he didn’t. It just may be that he is used to assessing people that he is unfamiliar with. I do the same thing sometimes, but am not usually so blatant about it.

                There was a lot of flirting going on tonight. Insincere Marguerite was sprawled out on a couch with Della Strype. They were touching and kissing and talking. Overall they seemed to be enjoying themselves. Lori danced with Brightstar and they seemed to have a lot of fun. They even came up to the catwalk at one point to make out. And Stasia flirted with Julia, successfully it would seem. De La Rocha flirted with Neon and they danced for a good bit of the night too. After a while I got Luna to agree to dance with me. We went to the glass dance floor, where there were very few other dancers, and danced to a few songs. After that we made our way back down to the bar to get more drinks. Eventually everyone had that same idea and there was more drinking and socializing. We left a little while after that. Thankfully Gawain remained sober, because the rest of us were not really in any condition to drive.

                The ride home went pretty quick. I think people were still excited about the club, but were tired at the same time. Unfortunately, my thoughts slowly started shifting to Rook as we rode home, which made for a more depressing ride. I couldn’t help but think of Rook’s body laid out in the back of the very same van we were riding in. The memory hit me like a ton of bricks and it was all I could do to not throw up. I think everyone else was still pretty distracted so they didn’t seem to notice that anything was wrong. I suppose that’s fine. For them, nothing was wrong. Sometimes it just doesn’t seem fair…


                Jacob put his journal and pen down after writing the last line and stretched his arms in front of him. He got up from the bed and made his way to the dresser where there was a bottle of vodka for him and bourbon for Luna. He poured himself a generous glass and drank it down in two swallows. He put the glass down and started to pour another when a voice interrupted his action.

                “Why don’t you come to bed?” Luna smiled seductively.

                “I’ll be there in a minute.” Jacob replied as he continued to pour another glass. He drank the second as quickly as the first. As he put his glass down his eyes wandered over the dresser top and came to rest on a pair of knives. The blades shone faintly blue from enchantments that had been placed on the metal. They protected the wielder from the effects of the cold. Jacob’s hand strayed and ghosted over the top of one of the knives. His head dropped seemingly in thought.

                “Are you okay?” Luna asked concerned when her lover continued to stand there quietly.

                “No, not really.” Jacob answered in a whisper. His right hand joined his left and he drew one of the knives from its sheath. The blade shone the same blue as the handle. “I remember so many times that I would spar with Rook. We never used blunted knives, even when he was first teaching me. We always used live steel. He used these knives, even for practice.” He deftly re-sheathed the blade.

                Luna got up from the bed and made her way over to her lover. She reached out and rested one of her hands over his and squeezed. She looked at his face and was surprised to see tears on his cheeks.

                “Well it’s about time.” She mumbled and took hold of Jacob’s shoulders and turned him to face her. She reached up and wiped the moisture from his face. “Come to bed and tell me about it. I want to hear about Rook.”

                Jacob looked up surprise written across his face. “I wasn’t sure if you’d want to know given what his last mission was.”

                “He was your brother before that. So, yeah I want to know more about him.” Luna smiled gently. She started to steer him towards the bed.

                Jacob followed his girlfriend’s lead and sat down on the bed. Luna sat down next to him and took one of his hands. “I miss him.” Jacob whispered and Luna leaned in.

                “I know.”

                “I wish he wasn’t dead.” Tears streamed down Jacobs cool cheeks.

                “I know.” Warm arms wrapped around the elemental’s shoulders.

                Jacob leaned in and rested his head on Luna’s shoulder and cried. Once the tears started they would not stop and so he sobbed in despair for his lost brother. His shoulders shook as he cried and Luna’s arms simply tightened around his.

                Several minutes later Jacob’s shoulders stopped shaking quite as much and Luna heard sniffles as her lover tried to regain control of his emotions.

                “Better now?”

                “I’m sorry that I messed up your night. I know that you wanted to do more than sit here listening to me bawl like a baby.” Jacob reached up and rubbed the tears from his eyes.

                “It needed to happen sooner or later.” Luna replied smiling gently. “You couldn’t keep all of that bottled up forever. It needed to come out.”

                “I need another drink.” Jacob mumbled.

                Luna frowned, but relented. “Okay. Pour me one too, please.”

                Jacob got up and padded over to the dresser. He poured two drinks and headed back for the bed. He paused for a moment and just stared. “You’re beautiful, you know that right?” He said quietly.

                “Where’d that come from?” Luna asked bemused.

                “You put up with so much from me and you can still sit there waiting for me. You should be running in the other direction. You deserve someone better.”

                “I’m right where I want to be you dolt.” She smiled. “Now tell me about Rook. I want to hear about him.”

                So Jacob sat down carefully and handed his lover her drink. He downed his in one gulp and put the glass on the nightstand. He started talking and didn’t stop until hours later.



                Insincere Marguerite’s Whispers

                Sordid

                “Sin” by nine inch nails was playing loudly on the speakers of the Unseelie Court. Della Strype was lying on a couch, languid. She smiled, allowing her breathing to finally slow to normal and enjoying the warm feeling as she watched her feline companion come sauntering back

                “Insincere Marguerite you came back to me. I was afraid you got tired of me.”

                The Darkling sat down on the couch. Long dexterous fingers on her right hand with one too many joints stroked Strype’s hair. The Shadowsoul smiled as she felt the caress.

                “Non, I promise I did not. I said I just needed to check on my friends and it was so. You doing okay ma petite?” She leaned over and gave the Shadowsoul a quick peck on the cheek.

                “Oh I am great. Better than great. You are gonna keep coming here right?” The dark haired Fairest looked up to Lurker.

                “Ah, now and again. We work the weekends. But I enjoyed myself, my girls enjoyed themselves, and the rest of the Motley enjoyed themselves to,” A head tilt, thinking. “different degrees.”

                “Specially Calamity, I see. But don’t worry so far the Fae Corbin has taken back there always back. “ Strype glanced at the door to the back rooms. “Humans not so much.”

                The feline fae frowned slightly. “Not very sporting, hunting humans.”

                “Only humans that should not go back with her, married, has a promise ring, has to be up early, something like that don’t come back. Others she does not bother with.” She shifted to put her head on the Darklings lap.

                “Easy for you to say you are not human. Corvus kill anyone?” The Darkling looked down at the woman whose hair she was stroking.

                “Nah, though he sometimes goes out, singing, and leads people to dangerous situations. He is not a hunter the way Corbin is. Be careful of her, that’s not even her final form”

                Insincere Marguerite scoffed. Hunting humans indeed. Beneath her dignity.

                “They sometimes say they are brother and sister, to freak people out when they kiss, but that is bullshit. They are a married couple that likes fucking with people.”

                “Hmm.” Insincere Marguerite gently stoked Strype’s hair. It all sounded just a bit too sordid to her. The Fairest was getting rather comfortable, but was hoping her partner would want some loving back. She hadn’t shown any desire, however, happy to have Strype be the one being ravished. Her reverie was broken by a gentle French voice. “What about the other two? The bouncy one seems to like Lorelei.”

                An eye opened to look at the woman with pigtails shooting through the air like a comet. “Ah, Brightstar. Brightstar is super perky. Used to be Day Court. Tried to run with the wrong crowd, apparently. I have had better experiences with the Day Court than her. I have friends on the other side. Not all so bad.” A chuckle. “Just most of them.”

                “C’est vrai. Well she seems to like Lorelei. Is she involved with Neon? They keep talking.”

                Strype shifted. “Electra. Nah. Well. They may or may not have had a thing briefly, but I don’t think it was ever a relationship, and it could have just been Brightstar being affectionate because Electra was having a hard time, or something. She had a death in the family around that time. I think Electra holds a candle for her though. She has that effervescent personality and Electra is so reserved. They are really close though”

                The Darkling nodded. Strype looked up. “Now don’t start recruiting, but honestly only reason Brightstar or Electra are Night is because they popped up in L.A. Corvus, Corbin and I are Night through and through.”

                Marguerite looked down. “Should I be calling her Electra?”

                “Nah, Motley calls her Electra. The Night Court in general calls her Neon. The Day Court calls her ‘Hey You.’ The Shadowsoul chuckled.

                “Well, maybe Lori can seduce Brightstar, and De La Rocha Neon and help them get together, hein?” Insincere Marguerite smiled at the thought. “And your name situation…”

                “Same. Motley calls me Della. Most others call me Strype. You, Magic fingers, can call me whatever you want.”

                “Yes, well, I will not be called the Magic Fingers.”

                Strype giggled. “I love your accent.”

                Insincere Marguerite smiled. “What about Corvus, Corbin and Brightstar, I assume that is not their names.”

                “Brightstar hates her name, so we don’t use it. As for Corvus and Corbin hell if I know.”

                The Darkling thought a moment. “What about V?”

                “Ah, V is not Motley. Nor is Salk. I mean he is cool, but kind of mysterious. Spy, Scout, Courtier type. He visits time to time, maybe in part to drop or take information from Corvus.”

                “So that is your Motley, hein?” Insincere Marguerite let her accent thicken again a bit, seeing the smile playing on Strype’s lips.

                “Oh, there is also The Grue. We call him Howard. Don’t call him Howard. He is a surly rivethead Ogre. I think his arms are wider than your torso, hon. We are just a strange little family that run a dance club. So tell me about your Motley.” Strips shifted her head and kissed the Darkling’s skinny leg between the bottom of her shorts and top of her knee high socks.

                “Well, Julia Oldacre, De La Rocha, Lorelei Grace and I are involved. Julia and I are engaged, as are Lorelei and De La Rocha are engaged. We are mostly Darklings and Lorelei in a little family, though De La Rocha aggressively resists stereotypes like hiding from the sun. Julia and I almost are stereotypes.”

                Strype nipped the leg and laid down again. It was a bit boney. “Darkling who gets in the sun on purpose. I like it.”

                The Tunnelgrub chuckled. “Well she is Summer Court, Lorelei is Spring, and Julia is Autumn. Julia does portraits and advertising for the Dream House, Lorelei is a singer and dancer, and I do lights, curtains, and technical work. De La Rocha actually works as an X-Ray tech. I do love them all so.” She smiled.

                “Oh yeah. I mean this is not our full time. We do some odd jobs, Brightstar and Electra especially. And The Grue, actually, works as a bouncer sometimes during the week like he is tonight. Corvus and Corbin get more of the income actually running it, and I am the cute Bohemian hanger on.” She wiggled her toes inside her boots. The rush had passed, and the boney leg was starting to get a bit uncomfortable.

                Insincere Marguerite noticed the movement. “Well with the rest Calamity and Gawain are a couple, though they each have a girl on the side. They are Autumn and Dawn Courts, and Calamity does managerial work while Gawain does security. Then Luna and Jacob…Jacob is bartender. Luna is a ranger but she does not spend much time at work recently. I hope it is not a problem for her.” The Darkling brow furrows. “They are Autumn and Winter. Oh and there is Ace, he is Summer and our MC, but mostly keeps himself to himself.”

                Strype groaned and sat up next to the Darkling. She was pretty sure her legs worked again now. “Well if I can’t take you home can I at least get one more dance with you? Maybe a number?” Insincere Marguerite smiled and nodded, taking her hand and leading her back on the floor.

                End Session LXXVIII

                Whatever the intended subtext, I can’t imagine that subtext was completely gone from everyone’s mind when “These Boots Are Made For Walking” was composed. Anything is possible, I suppose.

                There was a scene where Calamity went to visit White Maria left for morning meditation left out. Nothing big, but she and Dark Kimberly were fighting. No explanation for that yet (they were arguing in Chinese) but it was funny to see Kimberly start cleaning the house while irritatedly arguing without thinking about it.

                Della Strype’s name is misspelled “Stripe” in Lorelei’s journal. That was a character, not player, error presuming Strype spelled her name like a normal, well adjusted person. Also Corbin is not a Leechfinger. That is also the character, not player making that error.

                Among the new characters, Corvus and Corbin are Darklings. Strype and Brightstar are Fairest, Neon is an Elemental, V is a Beast, and The Grue is an Ogre. Salk has been on some of the NPC lists but he is a Darkling too. V is a Runnerswift Coldscale, but he has a Merit that lets him escape confinement if possible for 1G once per day, as long as skin shedding could do that (yes grapple or chains, no sealed box). Alternately, he can ignore a single attack of Bashing up to Stamina. Once he has skin shed once he cannot for 24 hours. Brightstar and Neon are both Bright Ones among other things (Telluric and Airtouched respectively). Neon just glows in blues and purples. Brightstar had the first Clause of Separation going all evening. If Brightstar seemed an odd fit, her Night Mantle is like 1, she joined after being mean girled in Day and becoming close friends with Neon (the two are not involved romantically and haven’t been, unlike what Strype suggested).

                Hope you enjoyed The Court will be visiting the Dream House in full next time (without V or Salk, who are not actually members of that Motley). Comments and Questions welcome.


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