A Friendly Meet 'n' Greet (attn: Damaris)

Amir kicked his heels up and rested his sneakers on the top of the highly polished table in one of the several studies at the Manor. Crossing his arms behind his head he pushed gently, tilting his chair back ever so slightly and looking for all the world like a lazy teenager. On occasion he could look more mature, possibly in his early twenties, but it took far too much effort to get himself there. His delicate bone structure and youthful face were fine the way they were, for tonight's purposes.

He had a mission, which required rather more delicacy than usual given that it involved several individuals who needed to be silenced. Couldn't go in and kill them all at once, no. That was bad PR and drew WAY too much attention. Vampires hadn't stayed hidden for so long by being dumb and obvious.

Instead there were several Nightsmen and women working to uncover the extent of this ring of impersonators. No one knew who the leader was just yet but they were working on infiltrating and learning that.

Usually Amir would feel restless. Particularly since he hadn't been quite so active in the werewolf scene as he used to be. This case was important though. Jin's sister Hana was involved and Ran was, too. Amir might give the little shit plenty of trouble but Ran was his little shit. Amir had been, would always be, fiercely loyal to his own. Ran was no exception.

He waited quietly, a folder in front of him, for his partner in this mission to arrive. Go figure, he thought, scoffing to himself internally. Damaris... Creator of lame vampires. Fantastic taste. Good call, there.

He didn't allow any of his disdain to show on his own face; since cutting loose from Subira he had learned which personality traits were his and which were made worse by hers. Sadly, he had plenty of terrible personality traits. But he did know when to keep his mouth shut... he didn't always choose to exercise that option but he would tonight, in spite of how retarded he thought it was to turn a one-legged man. Here, let me bless you with eternal youth and incredible regeneration... AFTER they cut your leg off.

He'd have rather died.

Damaris 10 years ago
Damaris -was- feeling restless she didn't have much to do here in Nachton. She was feeling useless, which in turn made her irritable and tense. She knew it and was doing her best to cope with it and counter it but more and more she was toying with the idea of going back to Scotland. Ambrose didn't need her. Her youngest had landed on his foot with with surety that a cat would have been jealous. Nachton was suiting him quite well. The fact that he was in love still rather boggled her mind, and with who was even more disconcerting but she'd been alive long enough to just go with it.

She was also looking forward to going with this assignment. She was anxious enough to get going that she was ready to go charging in sword drawn and to hell with the consequences. She knew better of course but something, anything, to do right now to prove she was useful, and to keep herself sane. Lately she'd been trying to help the staff of the manor, with both mixed results and a mixed reception. It might have been better if she hadn't had so much trouble with that vacuum cleaner bag.

Clicking the nails of her thumb and ring fingers together she made her way to meet with her partner for this assignment. She knew him but reputation only, but it was a fairly impressive reputation. Damaris knew she'd have to be on her game, not that she was sloppy or less than professional but this wouldn't be a time to let her standards slip. She wasn't certain she was looking forward to working with him exactly but it would be interesting, that she was certain.

The 'teenager' she was met with as she opened the door to the study wasn't exactly what she was expecting. The pose with his feet up and the sneakers made her smile, a twisted sort of sarcastic smile. One had to assume he knew how he looked and was playing around, it only made sense. If she'd been that pretty and youthful she probably would have too. Although she didn't look much older her features were a little sharper and a little harder to coax into a youthful appearance.

Leaning against the door jam, not sitting down just yet she spoke.

"Amir Rashid I presume?"

Damaris saw a folder in front of him and suspected it had the same information as in the one in her hand. But still she waited for him to confirm who he was before sitting down to join him.
Amir 10 years ago
Amir watched Damaris stop in the doorway and raised an eyebrow at her. He knew her face; they'd seen each other in passing over the last several hundred years although they'd never been formally introduced or done any work together. He couldn't see why she didn't just walk in so they could get to work, though. Well fine. She could stand there posturing at the door all day.

He tapped the folder on the table with his finger and looked up at her.
"You would presume correctly. If this is any indication of your amazing powers of observation, we're off to a fantastic start," he said, his tone not particularly sarcastic in spite of the words.

He certainly wasn't going to continue having a discussion with her like this. Amir opened the folder and leafed through the contents although he'd already memorized what was within. All the facts and information the Night had been able to gather over the course of infiltrating the group of rogue vampires. It was more extensive than they'd thought at first, and they hadn't yet managed to identify the leader or leaders. They were smart; they were careful not to organize together very often and when they did they did so quietly. They had spread the word around the city that they were Anantya, which they most certainly were not. And the things they were doing in the name of the oldest Clan weren't wise, entire masquerade notwithstanding.

There were some pictures to go with the facts; things like faces of vampires included in this ring and locations they had met. Amir had a leg up already; knowing Ran as he did, he was often privy to his conversations with Jin, and Ran kept his Creator informed as well. He had been perfectly clandestine about his coming and going at the Manor, his abilities enabling him to move around with perfect stealth. Being a bird was a good disguise - being a blended bird was even better. Ran had been spending plenty of time with his familiar too. Amir knew Ran would have liked to be at the Manor a little more but it couldn't work that way with his current mission. He knew he had to be seen coming and going in certain places if he wanted to be accepted as a clanless rogue himself.
Damaris 10 years ago
Damaris mentally shrugged at his words. While he sounded perfectly civil they gave every indication of him being irritated. Well fine, Hunt members weren't always the most social or polite vampires in the bunch. If they were they'd probably have gone into the Night or the Rose. He wasn't even being that curt yet so she didn't see an issue and joined him at the table.

"You can just call me Holmes."

She'd been through the material several times. Whoever these punks were they were smart, she was grudgingly impressed that they had slid under the radar for as long as they had. Usually a group like this slipped up and made a mistake much sooner than later. It made her suspect that somewhere in this group was a relatively old, maybe a century or two they'd obviously had time to learn a few tricks and how to stay alive. They were also smart enough to stay away from Shades, that would have ended things, or one or two of the group, quite quickly. She hadn't made up her mind if playing this game in Nachton, the seat of the Clan, was very smart or very dumb. At the very least it was ballsy. Unfortunately for them they would probably wind up more than castrated.

Flipping open her own folder, she had some note paper clipped in side, and skimmed thought them quickly.

"Alright then where do you want to start."

If he wanted to be all business she could do that. They didn't know each other, they weren't friends, and she wasn't about to curry favor with him. She would, however, respect the fact that he was the senior her. That didn't mean she'd defer to everything he said, but she'd respect him until he proved he didn't deserve it, which was of course rather unlikely.
Amir 10 years ago
Well, about time, Amir thought as Damaris deigned to join him at the table. He ignored her remark about Holmes, not particularly interested in being pals with her. He had discovered that that part of him really was him... maybe he was an asshole, he didn't care. This was work, not play. He'd have her back in a fight, that was for sure, but he didn't need to go out for drinks with her after. No, he'd go home. To Mara and Jin. They were where he could be himself. His real self.

He addressed her second question, idly flipping a few corners.
"I think we need to handle this carefully."

They'd both been told as much. Why they put Amir on it, he would never know; he suspected it had more to do with proving himself capable of subtlety, which he was. But he had spent the last two thousand years hunting werewolves and taking them out in absolutely spectacular fashion. He supposed he had somewhat of a reputation for... bigger things. This was fine though. Time to earn a new reputation. He could totally do that.

"We have members of the Night on the inside, still, and we don't want it to look like we've caught on to them. They'll break apart, hide, and run, and we'll never learn who's behind it, or eradicate them. Or sway them."

He watched Damaris through his dark, dark eyes as he spoke. Amir was never opposed to bringing vampires back into the fold. Anantya was the only true Clan, after all. Oh, the Evenhet had worked hard enough at it long enough to earn grudging respect, that was certain, and they had enough of a following to be known as their own group, but Amir still thought they were Anantya at heart.

He didn't mention to Damaris that Ran was part of the group. There was no picture to indicate him, or Hana. That was what it meant to be Night. Ran's position couldn't be compromised. Hana, Amir knew,was capable of hiding herself better than usual because of her talents. Ran was obvious, and he knew that if he got in the way in the course of maintaining his position, he'd be hit. Amir trusted him to know how not to get stuck in that rock and hard place.

He tapped his finger on one of the pictures.
"This is a club downtown," he said. "Out of the way, end of a road. A few of them meet there on occasion. Might be easy enough to arrange a scuffle in the alley nearby, take one or two out without being obvious."

The life of a Clanless vampire was rough. It was survival of the fittest. Amir and Damaris could attack without having to pretend; if no one escaped alive and they vanished afterward, it was very likely that others would accept the deaths as a fact of life. There were more clanless in Nachton than this group of liars.

What really bothered Amir was that these clanless had to have Creators. There were more of them than they'd suspected initially. They had to be coming from somewhere else, and that was exactly what Ran, Hana, and the other Nightsmen were working on discovering. Meanwhile, it was up to the Hunt to start clearing away the vermin.
Damaris 10 years ago

She said simply, if reluctantly. If she had wanted to be subtle and careful she would have hung out with Graham and Dougal. No doubt Dougal would be quite proud to have them both in the Night but that simply wasn't who she was. But knowing and loving them both dearly, father and brother, made it very easy for her to see and agree with Amir. The orders were supposed to work together, the Hunt wasn't supposed to make life harder for or endanger the Night and vice versa.

Glancing down at her own notes she saw the club he mentioned written down and nodded.

"Its a rough enough area that something like that shouldn't cause too much notice."

She agreed. Down down Nachton was perhaps a little bit safer than some big cities but it had its rough areas and its fringes like anywhere else. It sounded deceptively simple, easy. The odds were, though, unless they some how happened to bag one of the heads of this little clique of deluded rebels it should be.

Amir seemed rather flexible on eliminate the clanless ones or convert them. Damaris didn't hold that against him or even worry about the ambiguity. Thus far their orders weren't solid one way or another. She suspected some of the younger ones of this group probably simply didn't know any better. They might not even know that Anantya was a real clan and they were treading on dangerous ground by simply using the name. Not that she thought they deserved pity or to be coddled. They'd made a mistake, sometimes you only got one, but if it was possible to correct the error and bring them into the fold she wasn't opposed to that.

"How serious are you about pulling them in rather than taking them out? It might save the Night some work, get them some more details with less work..."

Damaris trailed off a bit knowing that brining them in could also just be more even work or cause trouble depending on who they wound up with. In someways killing them was easier, another dead clanless shouldn't be an issue or really raise anyone's eyebrows. Still, Damaris did hate to be wasteful and if they could bring this group down faster and safer she was all for that. She just wanted to be on the same page. There had been an assignment here and there where her partner had one plan and she'd had another. Nothing was more fun than watching your collar being killed when you needed them for information.
Amir 10 years ago
Amir grunted a soft acknowledgement of Damaris's agreement. He hadn't expected disagreement so he just took her attitude as a matter of course. She asked him what he considered to be two questions. Or maybe one question, but she covered two different topics.

"Did I give the impression I'm prone to practical jokes?" he regarded her with his most serious deadpan expression and tried very hard not to think about anything - not a single thing - that he may or may not have done to Jin and/or Mara in the past two weeks. He did recall winding up grudgingly sleeping in jackal-form with Dodger in his kitten-bed for a day. But surely a lost bet was not the same as a practical joke.

"It's not our job to convert anyone," he said stiffly. His previous words hadn't indicated that they, the Hunt, would be doing said swaying, simply that any less-than-subtle, ham-handed efforts on their parts could ruin any delicate work the Night had been doing.

He tapped the folder again.
"They put these pictures here for a reason. These are our targets. If the Night says eradicate them and hands this folder to us, we eradicate them. If there's someone in there they think we should save, they'll let us know."

Save the Night some work, indeed. Amir would have kittens himself before he switched orders. It was Ran's job to gather the facts, not his. It was just one way the orders worked together. The Night certainly didn't tell the Hunt what to do. This was the result of all three orders' leaders consulting and meeting with each other; mostly Jin and Mai, probably, in this case.

He realized he was lecturing Damaris, who likely didn't need a lecture. He bit his tongue and nodded his head at her with a little shrug. She didn't merit an apology; few did. But he did acknowledge, in his way, that he was getting off his soap box. He changed the subject.

"This club isn't hard to get into," he pointed out. "We can probably do it in there, or lure these two out. It just depends on how many friends they have. It can't look like assassination. It has to look like a brawl, or an accident, or a fight for position."

Therein lay the snag. In taking out a lot of these annoying pests, they really had to be careful not to scare the rest of them away. They had to get to the head of the operation. Amir would have been happier, much happier, to ride in guns blazing or work silently and stealthily, slitting a throat and moving away like a shadow. This job couldn't be quite like that.

"We have to leave enough evidence that their friends can figure out it wasn't just a hit."

Anyone they killed would be ash. As long as they set the scene properly, they could kill them how they liked. There just had to be enough witnesses to claim they'd seen a certain thing.
"I think, if we have a small enough group of witnesses, we might just be able to get them to see how it went down."

His lips quirked up at her, a silky smile flashing past. With the two of them working Command they could easily, very easily, convince a handful of younger vampires they had witnessed a brawl - provided they could get them all isolated and restrained. Then here would be plenty of cover to prove that the killings had just been coincidence.
Damaris 10 years ago
Damaris bit her tongue. Had she given the impression she was joking or naive? Rashid was going to prove challenging to work with at this rate. That was fine, she didn't have to like him, but it was a little annoying that he was already rubbing her the wrong way. Deciding that the feeling was very probably mutual she didn't say anything. Before she could stop herself though she did start to click her thumb and pinky nails together. Once... twice.... and then she caught herself and forced them to stop.

She hadn't said -they- should convert them. Hadn't even implied it. She'd asked if he wanted to bring people in, that was all and that idea he -had- brushed against. Once whoever was in they wouldn't be either her problem or Rashid's. Others would take over from there. That was fairly common place procedure, but apparently her partner for this thought she was still a little green and out to save the little lost sheep. If that -was- his opinion of her they were going to have some trouble working together, Rashid probably wouldn't trust her right off the bat. But as trust was earned not given neither arguing with him or explaining herself was really going to help.

And that was apparently an apology. No. It wasn't. It would have to do though and Damaris let the whole incident slide. They were both professionals not teenagers and nothing would be accomplished by her picking a fight or pushing for an actual apology. Although, how the hell were they going to manage subtle and discreet when he assumed to worst and growled rather than actually communicated? Maybe she'd been generous in her assumption of an easy night's work.

Dismissing his lecture and her irritation she nodded. Yes, playing to their strengths would make the most sense. Since she'd done some serious work with on line mapping sites, including street views, and had even walked the area last night she had an idea.

"There is an ally, maybe half a block from the club, no windows above it, no good line of sight. If we can get them out of the club that will minimize people stumbling on to us. Bathroom is another option. We'd have a small group but locking it would only call attention to something going on. I think getting them outside will work best."

If they stayed in the club, even a loading dock or a store room it was simply too risky. Command was a very versatile gift, it could be used to give them a huge advantage here, but you could only command people you knew were there. She hated loose ends.
Amir 10 years ago
Damaris mirrored his nod and Amir figured that would be the end of it. Good. She wasn't into drama; she could set aside her feelings for the sake of the actual job. Apparently she could use Google like everyone else. He certainly had.

Giving a hum of assent he looked at the picture of the club.
"Yes. I think we should avoid doing anything in the club. We could go there to be a presence and then take them out when they leave."

He slowly looked back up at her, another sly smile on his face.
"How do you feel about herding?"

He raised his eyebrows, waiting for her to follow his thought process. After a long moment he explained.
"We don't know how many of them will be there, or even if they'll be there tonight. So we need to play Nightsman for a little while. Go, hang out, see if they show up. Follow them out, and arrange to get them moving in the direction we want them to go. If it's just the two of them, we add another onlooker. Get them into the alley, take them out, and Command the ones we leave alive. What do you think?"

The rest of the clanless rogues would follow up; they would track down what happened to their compatriots and discover any witnesses. Those witnesses could verify that a territory struggle of some sort had taken place. They should be all right, and they could go in disguise for future endeavors... they might need to revisit this particular club.
Damaris 10 years ago
Misunderstanding aside, they seemed to be more or less on the same page and that was good. She didn't doubt that they -could- work together just how smooth it would be. They weren't exactly clashing just, on a personal level, off by a few degrees. That could be over come. More important he seemed to have done the same surveillance she had and had the same idea so that boded well and she relaxed a little.

Listening to him, she again nodded. It was very much what she had been thinking. Making a big scene leaving the club would get them more witnesses they they wanted or could control. Letting them set the pace would, oddly enough, give them more control.

"I think very few people go to a club by themselves so we should probably get built in witnesses."

Everyone did their command differently. Some used it as a sledgehammer, some a scalpel. Rashid was old enough he probably managed both, and she wouldn't much like to get hit by his sledgehammer. She was a thousand years old and suspected he could make her loopy.

"We probably won't have a lot of time for creating memories for them but I think we should mess with who did it, change our descriptions in the minds."

It would take some extra time and would be low priority if someone stumbled on them but, Damaris reasoned, when their witnesses told the story if they told it as a black guy and a blond woman, or two Hispanic men, or whatever, that would give she and Rashid an edge their next time out.

He'd probably already thought of it and it would probably earn her another lecture, but letting herself be browbeat into silence and doing just as she was told would cause its own set of problems. His reputation might be formidable. He might have been working for the Hunt a damned long time, but no one knew everything and no one thought of everything and she wasn't going down because if his arrogance.
Amir 10 years ago
Damaris didn't directly answer his questions, which he found mildly annoying, but Amir didn't mention it. If push came to shove he could probably handle this job on his own anyway. It couldn't possibly be any more difficult than Commanding and killing werewolves. It would most assuredly get harder as they were sent more targets, but these were nothing.

He raised his eyebrows at her idea of Commanding the witnesses to have seen someone else.
"We don't have time to build memories?" He chuckled. "I'll take care of that then, girl."

It was probably going to gall her, being referred to that way by a boy who looked younger than her. It'd probably gall her because at nearly a thousand, she wasn't young but she was less than half Amir's age. Amir couldn't help a tiny smile, though, at her words. Time to create memories indeed. That, frankly, was his specialty when he wasn't kicking a lot of ass. He could have an eyewitness with multiple personality disorder in under a minute. Creating layers and layers of Command was something he'd done under certain circumstances, but it was hardly required here. This was just a cover. And the Command would hold.

"With no guarantee they'll even show up tonight, shall we go dancing?"

He looked at Damaris with hard dark eyes. He wasn't going to have a lot of fun being at a club with her, honestly, but it was work. And maybe he'd get himself a drink while he was at it. He hadn't had blood in several days. Normally a vampire his age could go weeks, but not Amir. It was only with great willpower that he managed to hold off for more than a day at all.
Damaris 10 years ago
There was something about Rashid that made Damaris want to either wrap her hands around his throat or punch him in the face. Possibly both. He was deliberately misunderstanding her or deliberately being difficult or both. She assumed the only reason they were both on this milk run was so they could get used to each other for when they did find the head of this group of rouges. Eventually the odds were that would be bigger than a one person job and they should know how to work together.

Being called 'girl' wasn't the last straw, but maybe the second to the last. God she hated button pushers and that is what he was doing. Damaris ground her teeth slightly and counted to ten but didn't rise to the bait. If she didn't put an ice pick in his eye and destroy their working relationship she could probably learn a lot from him.

"Whatever you want sunshine."

She growled slightly. Maybe she had risen to the bait just a little. You'd have to be an unfeeling block of ice to keep Rashid from getting to you. Well maybe in another thousand or so years she'd be a total jackass too, or maybe he'd just been born that way. She didn't really care to find out.

Given the look in his eyes Rashid didn't want to go out and be 'social' with her any more than she wanted to be with him. Damaris could think of a dozen people right off the top of her head she'd rather be doing this with. If things got that bad she could always chew glass.

"Let's. It'll be fun."

She didn't even bother disusing her sarcasm at that point. He'd probably take issue with that too but she didn't care.

"I don't know about you but I need to change. Give me ten and I'll meet you in the foyer."

She'd already pulled what she'd wear to this place, she'd have to tweak her make up, but she would keep to her ten minutes. She'd go now but her attire would make them stand out like a sore thumb.
Amir 10 years ago
For some reason the fact that he'd gotten to Damaris made him slightly happier. Not that he'd been unhappy to begin with, but there was just something about knowing how to push someone's buttons that Amir liked. It was like he'd solved a puzzle, though Damaris wasn't a tough one. She had pride, pride in her job, and she hadn't liked to be questioned.

This might be a fun night after all, in spite of his partner's sarcasm.

"I suppose I can do the same," Amir said. He didn't live at the Manor full time anymore, but his suite (remodeled to accommodate three people now) still had everything he needed.

He returned to the entrance of the Manor , arriving once more before Damaris, now dressed in much better 'bad boy' teenager attire. He had black on from top to toe; heavy black boots and a pair of beautiful black leather jeans. He wore a soft silken button-down shirt with long sleeves to hide the tattooed chevrons on his forearms and a soft black leather jacket on. He wasn't worried about anyone recognizing him. Amir's work had been largely outside the US and against werewolves. Not many knew who he was outside of his Clan; he and Bao took great pains to keep it that way. If they continued to come here he would work on disguising himself better but for now this was fine.

He stretched his shoulders, ran his hand along the back of his neck, tugged down the arm of the jacket, tapped the toe of his boot impatiently on the floor. Each movement seemed like it was made out of boredom, and each movement brought him in contact with a different weapon. The wire hidden along the back of his collar; the knife sheathed to his calf; the long blade folded against his arm; the gun beneath his shirt. There were more; Amir was a walking armory. Tonight was no exception.

When Damaris arrived he jerked his chin out toward the garage.
"I have my own ride. You're welcome to share it."

He rolled his motorcycle out and climbed aboard, waiting for her to accept or decline as she liked. He might have enjoyed teasing her at the Manor but now they were headed out to work; he would be respectful enough. And he definitely wouldn't give her any reason to doubt him. Amir might be an ass, but he was a loyal, dutiful ass.
Damaris 10 years ago
Rashid almost certainly had the advantage here. Club attire dictated that she wear almost nothing and/or have it be skin tight along with insanely high heels. She refused to do the heels instead going with a semi punk/goth glam that let her wear Doc Martins, red, laced up to her knees along with artfully burned out leggings and a micro mini skirt. Her top was nothing but a web of laces and cords, over all it was very loose but the black material clung to her curves any time she moved and the front was low enough to be distracting. And she'd redone her make up to exaggerate here eyes and lips.

She was armed, as well, but it took some work when you didn't have many good hiding spots. The 'chopsticks' in her hair hold up the messy twist were stilettos, the black leather bracelets were studded, and she had several other blades on her besides. She'd never get through airport security.

Not a second later than she promised, Damaris was pleased to see he wasn't either. Rashid had also fallen into the part. Neither one of them would raise any eyebrows, they wouldn't raise any suspicion that was, either one of them might raise eyebrows. Maybe it wouldn't be a 'territory' issue, maybe they could just get someone to hit on either one of them, the other takes offense, fight ensued. Easy. Although she swallowed a laugh at the idea that Rashid would be a jealous lover.

Following him out to the garage she smiled a little slyly. Some how the bike suited what little she knew about him. If they were going to possibly play the jealousy card they couldn't be seen arriving separately.

"Nice bike."

It had been a while since Damaris had been on a motorcycle but she could ride, and had, she'd even ridden in the 'bitch' seat. Despite their little almost spat back inside she climbed on without hesitation settling in and holding on.

"Let's roll."

Apparently her words were unnecessary as Rashid didn't need an invitation to take off. That made her smile into the wind.

((OOC... both out with permission))