A Way Out

Ginnie stood before the white board of what she called one of the war rooms. There were several small meeting rooms that had a white board on one wall, a cork board on another, a chalk board on the third and the fourth wall was blank save the door to be used for slides, video projection and that sort of thing. She was working on a time line that began a full six months before the Hillman compound incident. It detailed the events that had happened between then and now. In black were the events that effected Nachton as a whole, green were Clan specific, red were personal and blue were the things that effected the gun trade in Nachton. There was way too much blue...

It was proof in her mind that her hold on the city was weakening and had been since that monster came to town and infiltrated her network. It was time to find a way out and she finally had something that might work with out turning the city upside down. She felt confident in giving up that portion of the city's underbelly that Tàcharan held. Her lab created all of the fire arms used within the Clan and so the small arms trade was no longer even necessary to keep them armed any more. And since that had been the reason Ginnie had gotten involved in the whole thing more than twenty years ago, it seemed time for the Clan to move on to bigger and better things than piddly arms deals in one city.

Her network of informants would remain intact and so Tach would not be blind to what was going down, but they would no longer control it. Ginnie was comfortable with that as well. The Clan needed to move on to bigger and better things.

She added the last incident, the death of a small family that paid her a rather tidy sum to operate independently, to the board and capped her marker. Her fingers found the end of her single french braid and pulled it over her shoulder. The first and second fingers of her left hand wound and twirled around the three inches of free hair below the rubber band as she surveyed the time line she'd built.

She sighed softly and turned away from the board. Ginnie crouched, bruise colored leather pants creaking, and picked up two of the six cases on the floor next to her. Placing them on the table she opened the first and pressed it's power button. As the hologram of the city warmed up, she opened her GPS system and set it to waking up as well. She picked up two more cases and placed those on the table as well. One was an ordinary briefcase that held the printed reports she'd give the other attendants of this meeting, and the other her lap top.

She pulled out the purple iBook and turned it on to boot while she connected it to the video projector in the center of the table. As she pulled up the proper program the door behind her opened.

Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
Leaning casually against the wall in the aerobics classroom, Alec grinned as the yoga session was rudely interrupted by Abdelkhalek and Williams kicking in the door. Rubber bullets sprayed the floor and rear wall of the room. The three other occupants in the room, all fresh blood in the training program, scrambled out of their stretches to take cover. Two would be sporting some very ugly bruises, one would not. Mr. Reyes had not inherited vampiric agility, but he was certainly well beyond human potential. As the new blood dove for his training weapon, Alec soundlessly left the wall and stood behind his first crop. Placing the white batons with a snap on each of their shoulders, he relaxed his focus and let his blending free. Making a -tsking sound, he stated

"Vous êtes mort, mes amis. Well done. You burst into a room you knew would be occupied, discharged automatic weapons and only got half of the occupants. ONE of you.."

Tapping the baton on the back of Williams' head, he continued.

"...failed to even check their corner of the room upon entry. Unfortunately, that is where the fourth party was in this case. What could have gone better?"

"I could have checked the corner rather than trusting that intel was 100% accurate."

"Good. Now, please carry out some hand to hand exercises with our yogis. I expect that the added impact of some combat training will remind them to move faster next time, or remain closer to cover no matter where they are. Reyes. Well done. Report to Mr. Heyn for your exercises."

Exiting the room, Alec walked through the corridors in his white leathers. The outfit was beginning to fit him a bit better - his own mindset was altering to better fill the mold as trainer to Simon's armies. Though pleased to be of use, he also tried to work out how he'd fallen into the position. No self-respecting thief would get caught in combat. Had he really become just another assassin? Pondering the oddities of his life path, he considered the upcoming installation of security on his pet project. And when had he started working on things for humans?

Entering the flat, he grabbed the verdiccio wine that he'd been considering for some time. Generally, he preferred darker wines, but a nutty white seemed to be in order. Hopefully Ginnie and Shay would agree. Grabbing the sharp cheddar, three green apples and a loaf of soft French bread that had been warm when he left (had he been training for so long this evening?), he bundled them carefully with three glasses into a cloth satchel and headed out toward the meeting room that his love had reserved. Initially, it would be just the three of them, so he didn't see the harm in making it more pleasant - he could dispose of the evidence before others arrived.

Besides, they could use some more family time. Between the training, the side construction project and working through the current events, he hadn't been as home focused as he would have liked. That would have to change. Arriving at the room, he paused in the doorway. Ginnie was almost done setting up, which meant he was late. He did come bearing gifts, however. It usually excused slight tardiness. Watching as she finished working on the cabling, he let out a slight sigh.

"I must be the greatest fool in the world, being late to return to such a perfect beauty as you."

Placing the bag on the corner of the table, he walked around to where she was standing, kissing her lightly on the neck. Leaning against the table, he removed his gloves before placing his hand on hers. Glancing around the table, his brow furrowed. It almost looked like she was planning a total overhaul of her organization. Shifting his body so that he could better see, he nodded.

"It looks like everything will be changing. Are you certain this is what you want?"
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie straightened, a smile given only to Alec on her face, and turned to face her love as he crossed to her. "Yes, you are, but I forgive you."

Chuckling, she brushed her cheek to his. Her brow lifted as he studied the room and frowned. His question explained the frown, and did not surprise her.

"Yes, a chroi, I am sure. It is time for me to move on to more than this. Or perhaps less than this. I don't know which is the better term. I do know that I am tired of things in the status quo."

Needing comfort, she brought her body against his, and laid her head on his shoulders. Her arms slipped around him, and her thigh slipped between his. The feel of his body beneath the leathers turned her on and that offered its own kind of comfort.

'I'll explain it better when Shay gets here, for now just hold me a little while."
Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
Moving on to more or less than what she had...it seemed a difficult concept for Alec to wrap his mind around, so he simply followed directions. Wrapping her up in his gleaming white, armored arms, he felt a bit more knight-in-shining-armor-ish than he was altogether comfortable with. He was all smoke and mirrors, tricks and planning whereas she...she had a very real amount of power on both a personal and an influential level.

Holding her close, he lifted his eyes and surveyed the boards. Most of the issues listed were near the time of his arrival, or shortly thereafter. Were these issues due to the distraction he had provided her during a crucial juncture? He thought about that frequently, but always came to the conclusion that the line of thinking was nonsense. He had also assisted with rebuilding and assessment to hold things together. Perhaps it simply wasn't as key as it used to be, so the effort put forth in rebuilding had been minimized. Maybe this meeting was to address exactly those things. Perhaps she was beginning to focus more on the home front as well.

Inhaling the scent of her hair, he let both the unpleasant and hopeful thoughts go. Sometimes the moment was more important than the unknown spread of the future, and certainly more than the finite realm of the past. Rubbing his cheek on her hair, he smiled slightly, breathing her in. Shay would arrive and break the spell in a moment. Tightening his embrace, he relaxed his body into more of a cradle, rocking slightly where his rear contacted the wood of the table.
Shay 16 years ago
Having been given 'orders' to get her buns down there, Shay really hadn't minded in the least. In fact, lately it had been impossible to get Ginnie and Alec together somewhere she could also be, and that was something she had been trying to do. So even though she had given them a bit of a faux argument, she quickly made haste.

One reason she wanted to see them together was the gifts she had bought them, that she had yet to deliver. There was no real formal reason for the tokens, except that she had grown to love her parents dearly, and wanted to show them in some concrete way.

Ginnie's cross had been the first purchase, and Shay was more nervous about whether or not she would like it, than Alec his gift. Religion was still a confusing topic for Shay, and in light of that she just wasn't sure how Ginnie would react to her gift.

The cuff links she'd bought Alec were equally impressive, but where Ginnie's cross was a serious gift, the cuff links were humorous. Shay wasn't sure Alec would like them either, yet when Shay had seen them they fairly screamed his name, so she had to hope they would at least garner a smile from her dad.

Wearing very low-cut, butter soft leather pants of pale beige, and an equally feather soft pink baby doll top, that missed meeting the pants in the middle by about three inches, Shay found herself running now. A huge smile was plastered on her face, and the excitement within her was palpable. Bursting through the door to the meeting room, her gifts boxed, and wrapped, and held tightly in her hands, she stopped short when she realized she'd interrupted something.

"Uh oh...should I go back out, wait a few, then come in again?"

She laughed in delight to see her parents being so loving. It filled her heart to know some people had wonderful love lives, even if hers was in a bit of turmoil at the moment.
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie had heard the thundering footsteps about thirty seconds before the door burst open. She grinned at the youthful enthusiasm still so freely expressed by her child. However she couldn't yet bear to let go of Alec, so she simply turned her head and grinned at the burst of sunshine known as Shay.

"No, dear, we're just getting back in touch. It seems that we've all been too busy for each other lately."

She gave Alec a final squeeze and brushed her cheek across his once more, before pulling away. With a secret smile for her lover, she crossed the room and pulled her daughter into her arms. Being three inches taller than Shay allowed Ginnie to tuck her blond head against her shoulder and rest her cheek on the pillow of Shay's hair. Holding her child close had become as precious to her as holding her lover and in so many different ways. She breathed deeply of the scent that was Shay, letting it linger in her senses for a long time before letting the breath out. Finally she pulled Shay away from her and smiled into bright blue-green eyes.

"I've missed you. How is your training going?"
Shay 16 years ago
Glad she wasn't to be sent away, Shay started for her parents, only to see them disengage, and Ginnie move in her direction. Since Shay was after hugs from them both, she readily wrapped herself into one from her mom, relishing the feelings of security, and comfort she always felt with Ginnie.

Shay had long ago understood that it was a combination of things that led her to feel toward Ginnie as she did, the fact that the other woman had saved Shay's existence being forefront. Yet there was a lot more emotion there, and some of it Shay just chalked up to the nature of a parent and child. There really was a lot to be said for unconditional love.

Releasing her arms from around Ginnie, Shay returned her mother's smile, and remembered the boxes in her hands.

"I've missed you too! And I think my training has been going pretty well. Dad can give you a much more objective opinion though, I'm sure. He's been a cruel taskmaster, let me tell you!"

Shay was teasing, but she kept her tone quite serious for several seconds, before the truth in her heart won out and she grinned at Alec.

"But here...I want to give you this before I forget. I've been trying to get together with you guys for awhile now, but sheesh...that's like next to impossible!"

Shay's admonishing was sincere, but not angry. She really had spent time with Alec, and Ginnie, just not together in the family atmosphere she yearned for. Having no other family, she cherished the one she did have, and whenever more than a week went by without her being able to join up with them, she was left wanting.

Dayle was considered family as well, but that was different. And with the way things were now between her and her lover, Shay was never certain really where their relationship was.

Grinning like a child of much fewer years, Shay thrust the small red box toward Ginnie, and waited for her to take it. Her remaining hand then thrusting the gold box in Alec's direction, while Shay bounced on the balls of her feet.

"Just cause I love you both so much."
Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
Smiling at the reviewed sound of charging footsteps, Alec was pleased that their daughter could move quietly when she wished. In many ways, Shay was still very transparent, her actions telegraphing her emotions in very clear ways. It made working with her much easier, since responses were predictable and clear most of the time. It also underlined her fundamental honesty. Alec worried a bit about that trait of hers - too much honesty was just as dangerous as too much deception in a world where your species was so greatly outnumbered. Once again, a worry for another day.

Craning forward, he slid himself fully back onto the floor, watching the way the lines of his lover and their child blended when they interacted. Shay had altered in many, many ways - even some of her fundamental motions were different though the frame that made them was highly similar to her initial human form. The natural draw she felt to others was still a very present force, but there were fewer filters blocking out her core nature. The change had distilled her back to her essential components that it seemed most humans forgot over the path of their lives. Some of their kind were the same way - those with long human lives that they could not get past, and Alec thought it sad. To feel the need to constantly repress who you truly were...what a sad way to live.

The other aspect was...intriguing. Shay's posturings were becoming an interesting amalgam of environmental inputs. Some of her gestures were taking on the motion characteristics of her mother...or Dayle. Alec didn't see as much of himself in there, but suspected that one of the other two might point out similarities. Visual self examination was somewhat tricky. There was still that old core of motions, though, that were vintage Shalimar. Watching evolution in action was a remarkable thing.

At the declaration that he'd been a harsh taskmaster, he grinned and winked.

"Just be glad you weren't practicing yoga earlier."

Cocking his head at the box heading in his direction, he took it, pulling her into the crook of his arm as he did so. Relaxing them back onto the edge of the table, he gave a little shake to the box. Wrinkling his nose, he realized that whatever was inside was quite well secured. He couldn't hear any tell-tale sounds from within the wrapping. Unwilling to release his daughter from his arm just yet, he improvised. Bringing the small package to his mouth, he snipped the ribbon with a fang, then cut the tape with a slight twist of his head. Sliding his long fingers along the paper, he slid the inner contents onto the palm of his hand, and let the paper down onto the desk surface. Popping the lid open with his thumb, he pushed aside the cottony material exposing the lock and key. Chuckling, he pulled them from their casing and brought them closer for inspection. They were well designed, and just slightly shorter than standard, which would eliminate the problem many sets of cuff links had - that nasty tendency to have enough excess room to free themselves early.

Disappointed that he had not changed from his training gear so that he could put them on right away, he placed them delicately on the table beside him. Squeezing her slightly, he said

"Thank you, that was very thoughtful."

Turning his eyes back toward Ginnie, he watched to see what her gift would be.
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie laughed brightly at Shay's description of Alec. "I can only imagine."

Her eyes lit with a quiet joy as she took the little red box from Shay. "How incredibly thoughtful of you."

She watched as Alec opened his gift and grinned at the cuff links. They suited him and she was proud of Shay's thoughtfulness and insight. When they turned their attention to her she chuckled and began to unwrap the gift by tugging the ribbon free. 'This is what family is about,' she thought as she slipped her finger beneath the tape. 'It's about simple gestures, and making memories. We haven't made nearly enough memories together. I need to fix that.'

She set the paper aside on the table, and lifted the lid of the small box, then moved the protective cotton batting. It was absolutely lovely, and Ginnie wanted very much to run her fingers down it's length, but fear of the holy relic kept her fingers on the lip of the box. It pained her that she could not wear such a lovely gift, but she would treasure it just the same.

"Oh Shay it's lovely." Tears threatened to flood her eyes and she swallowed them back as she brought Shay into her arms once more.
Shay 16 years ago
Giggling at the yoga reference, Shay went happily into Alec’s arms as he began to open the gift.

“Now there is something I’ve never thought to use my fangs for yet…I’ll have to try that soon.”

How incredible it made her feel, to give someone she cared about reason to smile. It was well worth the futzing over finding exactly what she’d been searching for, to now see appreciation on the face of her father.

With Alec, Shay’s eyes now returned to Ginnie, as her mother set about seeing her gift. Again bouncing lightly on her toes, Shay watched Ginnie’s face for her reaction. Confusion began to creep into Shay’s mind when her mother did not remove the necklace from the box, the way Alec had, but that was all put aside the minute emotions crossed Ginnie’s face, and she again hugged Shay.

“Are you sure? Are you both sure you like them? Maybe I should have waited …” She was about to say ‘until I knew you better’, but stopped. While Shay had really only been around Ginnie and Alec a short time, especially relative to the grand scheme of things, she doubted she would ever know either of them as well as she’d like. Though her parents were both very giving of their time and knowledge, as well as the affection they found comfortable expressing, she was pretty sure they both had things they refrained from discussing with her. Mentally shrugging, she accepted their claims of appreciation, and with one arm around Ginnie still, she motioned Alec to join them in a group hug.

“Okay, okay…now, what’s on the agenda here…I’m all for quality family time, so whatever you guys have cooked up is a-okay with me!”
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie chuckled once more. It felt good to share such simple things with people she loved. She'd been with out such things for so very long, her own choice of course, but having her heart filled once more was a treasure she would not let go of any time soon.

"I have a big project on the horizon, and I feel like it is time to start you on real Ops, so this, my dear girl, is your first debriefing."

She grinned at her daughter, before disengaging from the group hug. She carefully placed the lid on the gift box and set it next to her lap top. Later she would have one of the human lab rats sew it into her kevlar vest, on the left side just above her heart. That way she could wear it where it was meant to be worn, but it wouldn't touch her skin.

"Alright you two, let's get started."
Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
Sliding from his place on the edge of the table, Alec moved where he suspected Shay would have chosen to sit - right next to where her mother had set up the bulk of her toys. Indicating with his head, he pulled her chair out and then seated her. Brushing his lover as he walked by, he didn't pull her chair out - she would likely remain standing at the beginning of the briefing, but he would be ready when the opportunity presented itself. Instead, he headed toward his bundle and deftly uncorked the wine, decanting it in the preselected glasses to an appropriate level.

He realized that he had no idea whether or not Shay had consumed wine since her change. That would be a whole chapter in their getting to know you book. Placing a glass in front of her, he handed Ginnie hers, lightly brushing her fingers with his as he released and returned to the rest of the tasties. Dividing them up, he listened intently to Ginnie as she began her debriefing - the first information would likely be background he already knew, revisited for Shay's sake, but review was always useful.
Shay 16 years ago
A little giddy yet from how well her presents went over, to hear she would be participating in her first ‘real’ Tacharan event pushed her enthusiasm up another notch. Family time, AND further training, it was almost too good to bear.

But knowing she now needed to give Ginnie her full attention, Shay quickly took the seat Alec offered, and the wine, and listened intently.

Nodding in Alec’s view, her appreciation of the wine, Shay focused on her mother.
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie gratefully accepted the glass from Alec and took a small sip, filling her nose and palate with the golden liquid. It was lovely, and would pair well with the goodies Alec put in front of her place. She set the glass next to the little box and crossed the time line on the white board.

"I'm not sure if it will come as a surprise to you or not, Shay, but I am the head of the black market small arms ring in Nachton. Over the last year and a half I have been slowly loosing my hold on the city. Very recently I lost a little independent family that ran part of my import business. This seems to be a good place for me to change the way things are." She touched the board below several of the blue notations, before turning to face her family again.

"I took over from the mafiosos that had taken up residence here, over twenty years ago. I was newly in my place here at Duibne and my labs were not turning out the fire power we needed to wage the war we live in, so with permission from the powers that be I took out the leaders of the trade and became known as Cobra on the the streets."

Resting her hip on the edge of the table she pressed a button on the city hologram. Several buildings began to glow red and several more in blue. "This shows the holdings I have in red, and the ones I have lost over the last eighteen plus months. I do not need to tell you that this is not a good trend. I admit that I have not been as diligent with my network of late, and that has to do with some of the loss. However, most of it began when Hillman infiltrated my tight knit family and began to undermine my authority."

She reached behind her and picked up a bit of cheese and popped it into her mouth. "I will give you a history lesson on the Hillman fiasco some other time, Shay. Just know that he was a stupid man who did stupid things and we lost some good people to him."

She stood and pulled briefing folders from her briefcase and gave one to Alec and one to Shay. "This brings us to why you two are here today."

She sat down in her seat, leaned back and propped her feet on the table. "I am giving up the ghost. I'm frankly tired of being a ring leader, and my lab supplies enough arms for three small armies now and so the tight grip on the trade is no longer needed."

She took a sip of wine and nibbled on a slice of apple, while she let this information sink into the minds of her lover and daughter.
Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
He didn't find the revelation shocking. She'd done the job necessary and now it was an obsolete practice. More than anything else, he suspected that she kept it up out of habit. With his addition to her life, and now a child, he suspected that she was feeling spread thin, and was eliminating the logical and obsolete choice. Nodding along, Alec flipped through the folder, glancing at the sheets. He knew she would go over the contents in full, so he focused his attention over the folder in his hands, to their daughter across the table.

Shay knew some of what Tacharan was about, but it would be interesting to see if any of the influences in her past life as a police officer would create a moral dilemma for her. Things so far had been smooth, but the stakes were raising. Hopefully she would do well in the new game.
Shay 16 years ago
’Head of the black market small arms ring…mafioso…while Shay found the information to be new to her, it wasn’t the kind of data she found difficult to believe. Ginnie obviously had a phenomenal ability with weapons, and had to make a living some how. Why not put her talents to good use.

The name ‘Hillman’ was also something new to Shay, and she filed it away to discuss with Ginnie later, as indicated.

Taking the folder from Ginnie, Shay remained mute, awaiting more details, though there really wasn’t much else to be said.

When it appeared that Alec wasn’t surprised at Ginnie’s news, Shay finally did speak up.

“Well, I for one am glad. I know you must have been totally kick ass at your job, and with the whole ‘being a vampire makes us semi-indestructible’ bit giving you a lot of protection, I will still feel a lot better knowing you aren’t putting yourself on the line all the time.

Besides…now you’ll have more time to play with Dad and me.”

Shay wanted her words to be supportive, as she felt that way, but she had to reserve a little concern for Ginnie’s future too.

“And is that it? You can just say ‘okay, I’m done, find someone else…?’ I mean, I hope so, but even still…what will you do now?”

Having more time with her mother would be great, especially now that Dayle had backed out of the picture some. But Shay didn’t think lounging around the house all day long would keep Ginnie from going nutso.
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie smiled at Shay, more time to play was exactly what she wanted, needed even. Since her first husband had been killed she'd done nothing but go, go, go. She had worked to hide herself, then to find other vampires, then to educate her self and then to make a name for herself. It was time to do less for herself and more for the people she loved.

"No, I don't get to just say, okay I'm done. It has to be handled properly or the city will in essence fall apart. Crime is one of the things that holds a city like this in place, if you take the hierarchy out of that crime then chaos ensues and life becomes dangerous. As to what I'm going to do now, well I plan to lead a more normal life, one that doesn't include so much blood shed and intimidation."

She smiled and clicked the mouse on her lap top. "Which brings up to how we go about handing the reigns over."

A picture of the dock appeared on the blank wall next to the door. "This is where our journey will begin. I was recently contacted by the party responsible for killing that family I told you about. I've set up a meeting with them, here." The slide changed to one of the buildings. "We are going to have to go in more blind than I care for, but we'll work with what we've got. They won't meet with me unless it is on their turf, which is understandable. As I would do the same in their position. So we have to plan for every contingency we can."

"I don't and never have owned or been in this property and the only blue prints I could find are the original plans filed with the city. I think we can safely assume that the layout hasn't changed to very much in the twelve years it has been standing. Then again maybe we can't."

She changed the slide to an outline that was identical to the one in their briefing folder. "This is my tentative plan thus far. I can not take more than three Mercs in with me for no other reason than a show of good faith. I want them to look like goons, so I can't take the two of you in with me. I want you two as my surveillance, so that I know everything will be carefully monitored and that should anything go wrong two of the best ops we have are my back up. It is essential that we go in low key so that we make it out low key and finished with this business the first time."
Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
Pleased with his daughter's take on things, Alec considered one of her points for a moment. She had been comforted that Ginnie would be less at risk. He'd never considered her terribly at risk within her role in the underworld...he wasn't sure if it was his low opinion of humans, her longevity, or the fact that he took her nightly return for granted. A bit bothered, he stored the thought for later review.

Ginnie's smile had confirmed what both of them had been thinking. This was exactly the reason she was getting out. Pleased, he smiled to himself and thought of some of the new ways they could spend their time together.

Listening to the plan, Alec nodded. It made sense, but he did not like it in the least. He would, of course, break in on one of the preceding nights and make sure that everything was what it should be. A meeting on their ground, under their watch on a building with minimal preliminary surveillance was too much of an easy setup. If a fight broke out and they killed everyone, the objective would not be completed, and the process would be delayed significantly. Things had to go down clean, which meant no errors.

Glancing over the blueprints, Alec spotted several areas that would be likely candidates for remodel and hot spots for internal alteration. Those would need to be checked out as well, but for the most part the structure would likely be fairly similar or with a few predictable changes. At her mention of goons, Alec immediately thought of Bianchi from his new crop, Jones and Von Buren from the old guard. They were all competent and would certainly be able to play the part. In Jonesey's case, it wouldn't be an act, really...but he was very good at what he did.

Having Shay with him on surveillance probably meant a remote location, which he was not pleased with. He always preferred to be on site with her, even if he wasn't visible. With the addition of Heyn and Mendoza to the active roster, he could have the area well covered, but he didn't want to pull them off of their respective assignments if Ginnie was hooked on the remote view station. Frowning slightly, he decided to confirm.

"The surveillance center is to be remote this time, then?"
Shay 16 years ago
Nodding along, since everything Ginnie said sounded logical, Shay felt honored to be considered in the same category as Alec, and vowed she would move heaven and earth to do as Ginnie bid. Being with Alec offered Shay some element of comfort, knowing he would be there should she have any questions or concerns.

And yet there was an element of fear that poked at Shay, and started to manifest itself in a feeling of growing apprehension. Without thinking she lifted the wine bottle and began filling her glass. She had emptied it seconds earlier, and wanted the fortification alcohol seemed to give her the sense of. Unfortunately, there was a bit more wine in the bottle than her glass could accommodate, and it was quickly pooling on the table, just to run down into her lap.

Startled by the sudden wetness, Shay jumped up and banged her lap against the table. Thank goodness for leather pants, and the wine beaded up and ran off onto the floor. Looking at her parents sheepishly, she could only hope they wouldn’t guess the reason behind her small fiasco then and there. She didn’t want either of them to think she was unable to do what was asked of her, even if that meant she would start practicing…well, whatever she would be required to do, immediately.

Grabbing up some napkins, Shay began to clean up the mess she made, and was glad the wine bottle hadn’t been even more full.

“Are surveillance centers usually at the site?” That didn’t seem to make a lot of sense to Shay, but then what experience did she have? Perhaps there was something about the situation she missed.

At least Ginnie would have strength with her, and that helped alleviate some of Shay’s uncertainties.
Alec Devereaux 16 years ago
Smiling internally, he watched the accident happen and did not move to intervene. Either she was lost in her thoughts, which meant they were of sufficient gravity to warrant the distraction, or the alcohol was taking fast effect and conversation with her would be odd and perhaps counterproductive. Moving to assist with the cleanup, Alec answered the question.

"Generally they would be, but with my combined abilities and a subvocal tooth mic that the Tech team made for us, I generally go on site with the team and coordinate from there. Sometimes difficulties like pressure plates, infrared surveillance and other issues can negate this in the moment. For a meeting like this, if I were to counter their systems before the meeting, they may simply cancel or move locations, which would jeopardize the objective."

A good and valid question - so it was thoughts, not the alcohol. Pleased that she was focusing so much on the intellectual, Alec finished helping clean up and drifted away once again.
Ginnie 16 years ago
Ginnie was pleased to see her daughter's mind working to solve the problems at hand and did not move to help clean up when Alec did, she would just be in the way.

"I see no other way around it Alec. I have looked at this from more angles than I usually do and it is the only viable option that does not interfere with the objective."

She sipped her wine again and pressed a button on the GPS, then on the hologram. The blue and red on the hologram faded out and was replaced by a faint white pulsing glow on their target building. On the GPS the area was brought up and displayed from just above the rooftops so that a one mile radius was visible.

"Okay, this is where the meeting is set up. My particulars are nothing more than time and date. I'm figuring they know how the game is played and will have the place crawling with their people. And since I'm the one giving things over I'm the one that comes in with little protection. I come in with little enough that says I trust you to not hurt me, but not so much that I insult them by saying I don't trust them to uphold our agreement. Hence the three goons. It's enough to get me out of just about any situation, but not so much that I insult. And since they have no idea that we're vampires, we have an upper hand there."

She spent the next hour going over logistics and strategy with Alec and Shay. They both had insights that she'd not had on her own and by the beginning of a second hour they had mapped out a solid plan with several back up contingencies. Finally Ginnie leaned back in her chair and tossed her stylus down on the table.

"Any other questions?"