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Dead Before Daylight is an Alternate Universe Urban Fantasy role play in a world where supernatural creatures and humans exist side by side – at least, some of them do. Creatures like witches, pixies and satyrs live and work as openly as any human. They commonly hold positions of power in government and are afforded every right and protection.

Other creatures are not so lucky. Those believed threats to humankind and other benign creatures are still persecuted and oppressed. Beings like vampires and werewolves are still forced to live largely in hiding, as they are not afforded the protections of law.

Such blacklisted creatures have created a haven for themselves in the small city of Dawnbreak; but their sanctuary is becoming increasingly threatened by the arrival of outsiders. In the meantime a menacing power is lurking in the forests and increasingly beginning to threaten the town as people begin to go missing, and mangled bodies are beginning to be discovered in and around the woodlands.

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Brenda
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 What We Do In The Shadows, TAG: Dixon
The voice on the phone had been quiet, feminine and accented with an Asian flavor, giving little away beyond that. She had booked a pick-up outside of town and chartered a flight over the Northern woods, stopping at a national park stations there and then Embershard Lake. She requested to pay in cash. And she wanted him there in the middle of the night.

The rest stop was a few miles outside of the Village, at the end of a gravel road, but it had a wide, grassy clearing to one side of the facilities. Only the flickering lone bulb marking the outside of the small concrete restrooms near the roadside could be seen in the darkness, the dark tops of the trees looming around the place. It would be a new moon in a few days and the silvered light was bright enough to cast its own shadows in the undergrowth.

In the middle of the little field stood a figure who seemed to absorb that luna glow and cast it like a ghostly lantern from within; they contrasted starkly against the grass by the long veil of white which fluttered in the breeze, their faceless countenance at a distance as pale as the hair. They seemed a disembodied specter, the little figure clad from the neck in black clothing which almost blended their body into the trees. A coat was belted tight around them, the ends picking up in the wind...

DragonBlue

His most recent charter request had been admittedly odd. More often than not the charters he took on were just locals looking to catch a ride while he made a supply run across the state. Every now and again he'd be hired to fly some researcher out to one of the outposts he made runs to, or take a few hunters out. No one had ever asked him to make a run in the middle of the night.

This hire hadn't been by a local as far as he could tell over the phone. It all left him curious, but as long as the money was good Dixon wasn't inclined to ask too many questions. He'd just made sure his schedule was clear and that he was prepared.

So when the time rolled around he'd jumped into his old pick up and driven out to the location the woman had asked to be picked up from. Dixon tended to be a little loose with time, but he arrived about five minutes earlier than requested. The customer was visible as soon as he turned into the lot.

He parked on the curb and got out, slowly approaching the slender woman that was waiting. The situation only seemed to become stranger when he caught scent of her - not human, Dixon realized immediately, "You the one that contracted the flight?" he asked.

Ronin_shinju


The sound of the truck through the trees told her that the pilot was early, its rumbling grate sharpening as it came off the road and she could smell the petrol fumes. She turned to watch the pick-up roll to a stop in the lot near the cubicle house, her head turned to put her face in profile with only the tip of her nose visible past the screen of her hair.

He earned her respect for being early, which she saw as good business manner. She was watching him closely however from behind that veil, lashes low and red eyes rooted in her periphery. In a few steps she took stock of his gait, the way he moved, his attire and even his grooming. Then there was the aroma, that seemingly ever-constant smell of wolf in this town, lingering in her nose.

Thus far none of the werewolves of Dawnbreak had made any aggressive overtures (with the exception of the sporting store owner) and both parties seemed locked in an uneasy truce while they decided what to do about her. She was certain word was circulating among the local packs, soon they would know what she was on sight and Shinju did not like being at the disadvantage...

He asked if she was his contract and she took a moment to bow to him eshaku-style, her back straight and shallow from the hips. When she straightened her eyes hit his from underneath her brow, watching his expression very carefully until she stood still once more.

"Konbanwa, Redford-san,"
she greeted him before she replied, her chin dipping in a nod. From just inside the lapel of her coat she withdrew a business card between two gloved fingers, its rectangle like a stark negative against her silhouette. She presented it to him, the font face up and turned towards him, the cardboard held in both hands gently at the corners. "Mhm, yes, my name is Matsumoto Shiori."

The card said as much. a satin-finish to the surface and the simple, black letters embossed into it. First in kanji then in English underneath. It had a cell phone number in the same font on the back and nothing else.

DragonBlue

Those initial few moments of interaction confirmed Dixon's suspicion that she wasn't a local. Judging by the signs, she wasn't even native to the country. It made him even more curious about what her reasons for the charter were; but he had enough a sense of professionalism not to pry.

He took the card that was presented his way, looking it over for a few seconds before tucking it into his jacket pocket for later reference, "Pleasure to meet you Miss," Dixon drawled, shifting his weight to one side, "everything is ready and waiting at the air field, so we'll get started as soon as you're ready to get under way."

Ronin_shinju

Her eyes followed the movement of his hands as he considered the card and then stowed it into his jacket, watching the white rectangle disappear from view in the dim moonlight. He shifted his stance and the pools of spilled blood darted down his legs, watching the way he went about it for a moment. It was an odd look and one that had too many possible meanings to decipher.

"We leave now." 'Matsumoto' decided with another little nod, this time as if she were cementing the decision. "Please take me there."

Despite her polite request, she did not wait idly for him to lead her and instead pivoted on the ball of one foot. The simple action of bending to gather the shoulder strap of the small carry-on duffel looked like strange mannequin balleriba performing a plié. She was fluid and confident in her skin, that could not be disguised, and the determination in her demeanor mingled with her ingrained aloofness.

The duffel was weighed down, the way it hung against her hip betrayed that and one arm could barely be seen, black sleeve and glove against black nylon, draped over its zipper top...

DragonBlue

Everything just seemed to get more and more interesting. Dixon watched her pace away at first, gaze shifting to the bag she was carrying, obviously bearing something heavy inside. The wolf glanced around, then shifted forward to follow her back to his vehicle.

About three minutes later they were both inside the truck and he was pulling out onto the road, "So where're you from?" the wolf asked, testing the waters. He suspected the woman wasn't going to turn out to be a conversationalist, but he made the attempt all the same. It was an ingrained habit at this point in running the business.

And he was, admittedly, hoping to sate a little bit of his own curiosity.

Ronin_shinju

In the relative hush of the truck cabin, while the engine rumbled like an old cat's broken purr, the young kitsune had her own questions, but she did not dare ask them. Thus far this wolf had been the most amicable of the lycans in the town; she was rue to strain that.

It hurt Shinju's pride to admit it, even within the privacy of her own mind, but she desperately needed an ally at the moment...

He asked where she was 'from', a reasonable question and not the first time she had been asked it while in America. Although her English was well-practiced, she had a very strong accent and had thus far made no move to adjust her social gestures for Western customs, thus a bow or a sidelong look drew more attention than usual.

"Tokyo." Miss Matsumoto replied, voice quiet where her breath misted against the inside of the window. She had stowed the bag in her lap and had both arms draped, crossed, over the top, one fingertip stroking the texture of the nylon woven strap. She did not appear hesitant to answer his questions; because the lies were nearly ingrained at this point.

"Are you married, Dixon Redford-san?" came her sudden and seemingly random question.


DragonBlue

"You're a long way from home," Dixon remarked, casting a glance her way. Dawnbreak wasn't the sort of town that got many visitors. It was one of those small towns that was barely populated enough to merit a spot on a map. More often than not, new comers came in the form of wolves who'd heard rumors that the town was a welcoming haven to their kind.

Whether or not that was really true was up for debate.

Before he could ask what someone like her was doing in a town like this, though, she spoke up with a rather abrupt question that gave him a pause, "Married?" Dixon echoed, then shook his head, "nah, never settled down," he answered, briefly throwing a curious look at her.

Ronin_shinju

His comment tugged at the mental stitches she had sutured over the wound in her heart; the mere mention of 'home' bringing with it anger, grief and fear. It was no accident she had found one of the smallest and most remote towns south of the Yukon.

However, had she known about the abomination in the forests surrounding the lake-side village, unlike the rumored immigrants, the werefox would have chosen to buy the cabin in Sitka.

The question in his glance was palpable, but he answered her and she believed him. Anyone else might have taken the forward question as some sort of proposition, but there was no musk to her presence. "... There is a reason why I insisted on paying you a bonus."

Her eyes were not for him when she said it, rather the dark trees outside the glass, her own ghostly reflection showing her still features turned away from him. It was a rather large bonus at that: fifty percent of the total fee, plus expenses. It might as well have been paid to him in a black and silver funeral envelope as far as she was concerned though.

He smelt strongly of spicy lycan aromas and looked of strong body, enough that was she confident he had been the right choice to take her on her hunt. She drew a line at leaving orphans or widows in her wake however...

DragonBlue

The statement that followed up was perplexing. Dixon wasn't quite sure what the correlation was, but he was even more certain that something was up. He tapped his fingers against the steering wheel in a waving motion, "The offer did stand out as odd," the wolf admitted - though he hadn't been particularly inclined to question it. He didn't exactly run an inexpensive charter considering he ran the business alone and planes weren't cheap to maintain.

"So what exactly is all of this about?" he finally asked, forgoing his usual professional courtesy. After that remark it was starting to become too strange to ignore.

Ronin_shinju

To his credit he had not simply been greedy and thought the foolish foreigner had made a gross over-estimation of tipping customs. It would be a shame if she had to put him between her and the beast...

Her grim predictions were kept to herself.

But so far Dixon Redford had been temperate, professional and had even surprised her after some of her recent interactions with local lycans. Therefore she answered him: "... There has been... something... coming from the west forest and roaming my property."

The white-haired Nippon was not being deliberately vague for once, Shinju honestly did not know what to call the terrifying shadow that had risen from the trees that night on the road. The internet provided a plethora of suggestions, of course, but saying her suspicion out loud felt as it might invite disaster.

"I am going to find it an kill it." she finished, at last turning her head away from the window to rest her cheek against her hand propped on the armrest of the door. Her stare was confronting, but perhaps that was because of its unnatural color and not on account of hostility.

Something within her was beginning to grow weary of hostility; too many teeth were at her throat in these dark days, her flesh feeling trapped between the jaws of two growling beasts...

DragonBlue

She answered, though it was one that only raised more questions. There was a brief stretch of silence between them while Dixon considered what little information had been shared.

"Something," he repeated, "like what?"

He'd heard some interesting rumors going around town lately. Things that he usually would have written off as nonsense had one of the stories not come from someone he trusted. Then there had been the strange sounds he'd heard - but that had been several weeks back, and Dixon hadn't heard anything of the sort since.

The wolf couldn't help but wonder if the woman's mission was related to the stories of the creature.

Mindy G

He pressed her to elaborate and silence soaked back into the truck cabin again for a long moment as her eyes shifted their focus, staring through his hands on the wheel. She could hear again that mournful, agonized howl echoing through the cold night air; it was a sound which woke her from her sleep slick with cold sweat.

Reflexively a lie was on the tip of her tongue, something disarming and dismissive, but then it occurred to her he had not simply written her problem off as a bear or bull moose...

"You are more familiar with the area. Tell me what you think it could be." It was not a request and she was looking right at him now, an invisible vein of tension threading itself into her spine where she sat a foot away.

The sneaky fox did not give up the card against her chest easily...


DragonBlue

There was a stretch of silence between them as Dixon pondered how to answer, "I mean... I don't really know how to answer just out of the blue," he admitted, "there's a lot of shit out in these woods. The Togiak alone covers about sixty five hundred square miles and beyond that there's millions of acres of wilderness - I mean shit, there's land out here that's never been touched by man even in the local mountains."

He looked at her for a few moments as he drove until he had to check the road again, "But ah... there've been some pretty wild rumors kicking up around town," Dixon tacked on somewhat hesitantly. As much as he enjoyed the scuttlebutt he wasn't really the sort to spread it around. The busy bodies in town did plenty of that and a small tale could warp into something big pretty quick - that was just the nature of the beast in a boring place like Dawnbreak.

Mindy G

When he looked at her she had the ghost of a smile resting in the dimpled corners of her lips, the dark burgundy of her own stare locked on him in the window's reflection. His answer, or maybe the fact he answered at all, apparently pleased her.

The expression was gone by the time he glanced back to the road, fading away until it was indiscernible on the canvas of her features. She blinked slowly, her lashes lowered for a heartbeat longer before Matsumoto changed position, removing her arm from the door rest and laying it in her lap with the duffel. "Hm." came a contemplative sound from her throat and then she nodded, as if congratulating him on passing a test.

"Tell me the rumors?" Now she was asking him, a tiny shift in the dynamic nearly perfuming the air as a bit of the tension dissipated from her side of the truck.

DragonBlue

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