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Morrigan

Whoa, didn't see that coming...

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Alice had come outside early in the morning and released the hounds (or let the dogs out, not sure which I prefer here). She had one of the books her mom had brought her. She was on the stoop in the swing rocking herself as she read and made the humming sounds that Seth loved and sometimes got annoyed with.

 

She would be listening to the dogs when an unfamiliar person approached. "I recommend you stop and identify yourself," she said looking up from her book and the albino woman. "Not exactly fond of unfamiliar guests," she said almost exactly like her brother had. It was a family trait.

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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Not just a family trait, but one the entire town shared. It would have been something she preferred before this entire debacle with the unknown creature. However when she found herself in the undesirable position of needing assistance, it proved more bothersome than convenient...

 

The albino was in something of a more presentable condition than she had been when caught in one of the wards yesterday. After going home to bathe and consider her options, she was now dressed in flared jeans, ankle boots, a grey turtleneck and a dark, woollen coat which contrasted against the fall of her snowy veil. Makeup subtly emphasized the pair of deep, red eyes that watched both the dogs and the porch.

 

"My name is Shinju." she announced, stopping in her next step to hold her little white hands out by her hips, palm displayed and empty. As much as it pained her to do it, especially here, she remembered what obfuscation had gotten her at the brother's domain.

 

"I am looking for Alice Gregory."

 

Even as she said that, her glance skimmed the surrounding property and the windows of the house, as if she were looking for a familiar face....

 

MorriganDragonBlue

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"And what are you looking for her for?" Alice responded easily setting her book aside knowing full well she was fine on this property, especially against another shifter. It wouldn't make her husband... or well anyone happy, but shifter and hunter blood did her well. Plus she could do with a good fight if that's what she was here for.

 

Alice stood up belly first. 4 months pregnant with triplets, she looked like she was already almost six months pregnant and nearly ready to pop.

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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"I was informed she could help me with an usual problem...." the white Japanese woman replied, reluctant to call out her full purpose across the yard. Although, in the grand scheme of things, this welcome was thus far the least hostile of them all...

 

 

She did not think it appropriate to mention that her brother had told her Alice was here; given his reaction, she could infer they were not on good terms...

 

 

DragonBlue Morrigan

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Seth was out on the back edge of his property with his father when the barking of the dogs drew his attention back to the house, "Were you expecting anyone?" he asked, glancing at Red.

 

"Nope," the wolf answered, leaning down to retrieve a branch and toss it into a nearby wheelbarrow before continuing to scout for debris that could injure the horses, "they probably wouldn't be coming around that way if I was anyway."

 

Seth frowned and turned a little more fully towards the house, trying to get a glimpse at what had set off the dogs. What or whoever it was was obscured by the structure, but he knew from the way the animals were baying that it wasn't just a passing car or animal, "I'm gonna go see what it is," he muttered - his wife was alone in the house.

 

Red muttered something that he didn't catch, but Seth didn't pay any mind as he reached the fence and climbed over it. A couple of minutes later he was rounding the side of the house to find Alice on the porch talking to a woman he'd never seen before.

"Everything alright?" he asked, initially passing the stranger to go to Alice.

 

Morrigan Mindy G

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"So far so good. Shinju here is looking for Alice to help with an unusual problem," aka she hadn't indicated to the woman she was Alice quite yet. "She hasn't exactly specified the problem though," Alice clarified reaching to Seth to rub his back as he took the steps up the porch to join her.

 

"So Shinju, what exact problem do you need her for and who referred you to her? I didn't catch the names of the people."

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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Guest Ronin_shinju

The fox was wary, her body language betrayed her that far as her chin flinched higher, her hands dropped from their open-palmed gesture and her heels shuffled an inch wider. He was a much larger man and he brought with him the scent of wolf, and if she was sloppy her speed would not save her if he chose to attack. Given her experience thus far, she fully expected it...

 

When the dark-haired woman who reached out to touch the male (clearly her partner by the way they both drew in close to one another) asked for names, the albino sighed, her shoulders drooping. As if she were resigning herself to all hell breaking loose. Again.

 

"The owner of the sporting store directed me to the Gregory family. Her brother, Damian, told me I could find her here..." the fox who called herself Shinju offered, speaking the name carefully. "I need help to drive a creature off my land."

 

The wakagashira was not stupid and suspected by now that the woman she was speaking to very well could be 'Alice', but she maintained the pretence, erring on the side of caution. After the path she had trod to get there so far, she was finding diplomacy the more solid tactic. However she was giving up too many secrets in the process.

 

Tilting her head to one side, her gaze swept over the man a little too intently for a moment and then she asked him directly: "Does the Deputy Sheriff live here?"

 

 

MorriganDragonBlue

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The way the answer was phrased caused Seth to glance down at his wife, but he went along with it as he settled beside her. The way he stood as his gaze turned back on the stranger was reminiscent of a wary animal. The more Alice began to show the more protective Seth became.

 

His brow furrowed when Shinju began to lay out her reasons for coming there. Donnie hadn't mentioned anything about referring someone to the Gregory family... but they hadn't spoken at length recently either. Maybe that wasn't so far fetched.

 

When Damian was mentioned the wolf's lip curled briefly, a fleeting indication of dislike that was gone as swiftly as it appeared. Why would he send someone here rather than deal with it himself? Alice had already told her family she was leaving the business.

 

"He doesn't, no," Seth answered, scrutinizing the smaller woman intently as though he might be able to discern her motives if he just studied closely enough, "what business do you have with Red?"

 

Morrigan Mindy G

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The red eyes went from the male to the female and back again, meeting his eyes solidly. There was little to see there, like trying to look through a shallow puddle of blood.

 

"He was with me when I encountered the beast." she told him, slowly and clearly lifting a hand to reach into her coat. "I also have a photo. On my cellphone." Even as she said it, her hand produced the small, black rectangle.

 

Shinju was better prepared this time and she would be damned if she was being handed off to another party again. She would convince these people to help her by any means necessary- she needed the beast gone.

 

It was a preoccupation that she could not afford right now, not with her former Clan lurking in the forest as well. The new moon was approaching and she had to keep her promise to Norobu...

 

DragonBlue Morrigan

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Alice couldn't help the chuckle that came with the mention of Donnie and her brother only stifled by her leaning into Seth and putting her teeth on his shoulder. When Seth bristled over the woman asking for Red she pulled away. "So are you looking for Red or Alice? You also didn't tell me what you're dealing with that requires her help."

 

She rubbed the top of her belly absently as Venice came over to lean against her.

 

It wasn't an offense to the woman at all. Small town, fringe supernaturals and a random woman claiming to be sent from person to person and leading, altogether, toward her. It made Seth bristle and it made her confused. She didn't mind helping people but she also wasn't supposed to be working anymore, although the prospect of having something to do made her happy even if, in the end, she wouldn't be able to do it.

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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The red eyes went from the male to the female and back again, meeting his eyes solidly. There was little to see there, like trying to look through a shallow puddle of blood.

 

"I only ask after him because he was with me when I encountered the beast." she told him, slowly and clearly lifting a hand to reach into her coat. "I also have a photo of it. On my cellphone." Even as she said it, her hand produced the small, black rectangle.

 

Shinju was better prepared this time and she would be damned if she was being handed off to another party again. She would convince these people to help her by any means necessary- she needed the beast gone.

 

It was a preoccupation that she could not afford right now, not with her former Clan lurking in the forest as well. The new moon was approaching and she had to keep her promise to Norobu…

 

"Please. I cannot kill it alone."

 

DragonBlue Morrigan

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"Was he now?" Seth asked a little skeptically, "When was that, exactly?" he questioned. Red hadn't mentioned that yet.

 

But Red was just around back and conveniently available to clarify, so the wolf moved forward as she produced the phone to pull up the image. Seth paused as he looked down. It was dark and of a poor quality, much like one might have expected from a so-called Sasquatch image, but even still he could make out the grotesque form of the beast he and Alice had already encountered twice now with bad results each time.

 

Seth rolled his shoulder absently, looking towards Alice and nodding for her to come take a look for herself.

 

Morrigan Mindy G

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Alice looked around Seth to the image of the creature. She wanted to ask about fifty more questions but as she considered it she simply drew in a breath and let it out. If she was out she had to be out. She hadn’t even spoken to her father in almost 2 months.

 

“Well it’s great photoshop if it’s not genuine,” she said to Seth trying to make light of something she felt obligated to take care of but couldn’t. Her family would have to deal with it.

 

“I’m Alice by the way,” she said glancing up from the phone to the woman. “I can’t help you though. For obvious reasons,” she said rubbing her belly. “That thing has already fucked me up, twice.”

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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The much smaller Asian held her ground as the male wolf advanced, eyes flicking to check what the woman was doing past his profile.

 

He came in close and she watched his face as he looked at the image of the grotesque shadow standing against the pale backdrop of the thawing ice at the bottom of her wharf. The thaw gave a hint that it had been a few weeks ago.

 

"Over a week ago." the albino replied to his question, keeping to the facts. The less she had to give away the better. Too many of the locals already knew too much...

 

She got the response she was looking for at last when the wolf glanced over his shoulder, something in his eyes making her come to inspect the picture also. She was sceptical. Of course she was. This would have been too easy otherwise.

 

"It is genuine." she told the mother-to-be, for all the good she expected it to do.

 

 

Her suspiscion was confirmed when the woman introduced herself as 'Alice', to which Shinju nodded a bow in her direction, then her partner's. She withdrew the phone as she did so, stowing it back inside the coat.

 

 

"I understand. I apologise, no one informed me of your... situation." the woman returned, glancing down at the protruding belly.

 

 

In the same way she had asked Dixon Redford that night she had tried to go hunting with him, whether or not he was married, because she refused to risk a father or husband's life- likewise Shinju would not put a mother or child in harms way...

 

 

In the following silence the albino let settle, the red-eyed foreigner was clearly resigning herself. She had just made the decision to handle the matter herself. With a kitchen knife if she had to. It was likely the creature would do Norobu's job for him, but at least it would not threaten anyone else after her demise...

 

 

"Now that I see for myself... I withdraw my request for help. I am sorry to have bothered you, Alice-san. Sir."

 

Morrigan DragonBlue

 

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Even knowing she probably hated to do it, Seth felt a wave of relief when Alice turned down the job. It'd save them a lot of stress.

 

Seth gnawed on his lip contemplatively, "What's got you wanting to go after something like this anyway?" he asked while folding his arms over his chest. So far himself and Alice seemed to be the only ones that had been injured by the beast. Otherwise all that seemed to have come from its presence were rumors, each growing wilder than the next as bored locals inflated them for entertainment.

 

Morrigan Mindy G

 

 

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Her head leaned ever so slightly to one side and she looked at him through her lashes, almost accusingly. "You have seen it." she replied, having gauged his reaction. "It is passing through my property every night, coming closer to my house each time... Why would I not?"

 

She was not about to admit to having bigger things to handle...

 

DragonBlue Morrigan

 

 

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"Yeah, I've seen it," he nodded. He wouldn't have been at all upset to never cross its path again, either, "Been close enough to know I wouldn't go seeking it out until I knew for sure how to kill it. But that's not really an answer. Has it caused you any harm?" he pressed.

 

Mindy G Morrigan

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The albino's lips pursed for a moment, as she withheld the curt reply; what do you think I have been trying to do?

 

Of course the kunoichi was not a fool and had no desire to throw herself at a creature that could handle an axe to the chest like water droplets. But the local vendor would not sell any firearms to her. The Hunters refused to help her and sent her to a pregnant woman and her partner.

 

She had very little alternatives left.

 

"It chased 'Red' and I. It is my belief it meant to kill us. We hid inside my home while it was distracted by other prey, but it continues to return to my land... It is only a matter of time."

 

DragonBlue Morrigan

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“It’s not exactly that simple,” Alice interjected into the conversation. “Whether it’s hunting ground is on your land or not, which I’m not saying if it is or isn’t. Getting rid of it isn’t as easy as shooting it with a gun. I’m one of the best hunters in this town and I don’t even know how to kill it save for a few theories. Right now your better off getting some wards and ignoring the thing.” She neglected to say she also wasn’t a hunter anymore. It was too ingrained in her that she was that the thought didn’t cross her mind in that moment.

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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Her frustration was begining to show through the cracks in her politeness as her eyes flared while she listened to the woman's advice, all the while mentally berating her. That was precisely what she had been trying to do from the minute she walked into the sporting goods store.

 

Shinju did not have a death wish, she did not want to perish at the hands of the beast, but she was out of allies and options.

 

"I would like nothing more than to take refuge inside my home and leave the creature to its ways," the fox replied through her teeth, her nude-painted lips barely moving as she spoke. "Unfortunately I do not have access to such magic." And her brother did not seem as if he would be keen to help her on that front.

 

"Do not trouble yourself with the matter. I will resolve it." Shinju followed up, looking squarely at the woman and then the man, and probably the father of her child, for several seconds each. She was snipping off the matter like cutting a string, having already made her mind up. There was no compromise on the matter; neither the pregnant Hunter or her man would be anywhere near it when she went after the creature.

 

Going further, the albino took a step back from the pair with a shallow bow, silently indicating she was getting ready to walk away. "Congratulations on your coming child. Osakini."

 

MorriganDragonBlue

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Alice pulled away from Seth. "Wait, wait wait. Slow your fucking roll princess Fujiwara," Alice said putting her hands up indicating she wasn't moving in to attack her or anything. "My aunt is in London. She can pop over for a few fucking hours and make you wards. Donnie's sports shop ain't exactly magic central," Alice said rolling her eyes. "If you were looking for a deterrent then there are a dozen other shitty places in this town to go to. You want to get rid of it. It's just not something you can do yet."

 

"Come inside. I don't have saki but I've got whiskey and beer. I'll call my aunt. Jesus I forgot how uptight Japaense people are," she sighed rolling her eyes.

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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The term 'Princess Fujiwara' made the fine dusting her hair that formed her brows to lift, her poker face gone for a moment. She recovered as quickly as it had come, but her mind was left contending with the many indications that title brought.

 

"You know of my Clan." the werefox was quick to declare, her voice wary, as if she did not like the idea of a self-professed Hunter being so knowledgeable about her or her skulk.

 

And that brought with it a dozen other fringe situations- did this Hunter know about the recent death of the Fujiwara oyabun? Did she know about the Amber Fox having taken his place after the callous murder of her father at the hands of his estranged, pale daughter? Was she walking into some sort of trap? Too many questions...

 

Shinju did not immediately move to follow Alice, glancing at the man as if he were a road block she had to walk past and deciding to linger. A glass of whiskey did sound relieving at that point, but she was not going into the house until she had gauged how the pregnant woman fit into all of it...

 

Morrigan DragonBlue

 

 

 

 

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"Kinda hard not to. I spent like 10 months, almost a year in Japan. As a wolf it's not exactly easy to turn," she laughed. "You either make friends or you make enemies. Pretty sure I saw you at a few of my fights," she grinned. "I won if you forgot," she advised the woman. "They called me the White Jaguar if I remember correctly. Ummm.. I could never fucking pronounce it. Howaitojag?," she frowned with a shrug. "Something like that," she gave a laugh.

 

"Come on. Babe, you want to go ask your dad about the picture?" or else he was going to stick to her hip like the protective lover. She knew that the white fox here wouldn't be able to pass their door if she meant ill to her or her child so it was mostly a test of authenticity to her.

 

DragonBlue Mindy G

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"Hoh-why-too-jay-ga..." the albino quietly repeated the word, emphasizing its phonetics as she finally took a step past 'Babe'. Alice had already admitted her pronunciation was terrible, so the Japanese fox did not see it as rude to assist her.

 

She was clearly mulling on the information as she headed towards the porch, red eyes glancing around the ranch now as if she suspected the familiar face of the deputy to appear from any direction. The kunoichi was observant, already putting two and three together; so this woman was the daughter-in-law of the man she had labelled 'Kurenai'. And that wolf was his son. She was deeper into this tangled family than she wanted to be and yet she could not help but wonder where the pilot, Dixon, fit into all of it...

 

"Forgive me, at the time I was likely watching more important things than the arena," Shinju was back to being formal again. "I will take your word for it. Whiskey, kudasai." More confidently now the albino followed onto the porch, intending to take this woman up on her offer for a drink. It would be needed while she got to the bottom of this.

 

As for meaning any harm to the mother or child, the fact was the exact opposite; the young woman had been ready to walk away and take on the burden herself to keep them out of the way, therefore 'harm' was not her motivator. However, given her previous experience with the wards on the Gregory property, it would have been best not to mention the house was protected by them.

 

Morrigan DragonBlue

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Seth listened to the exchange between the pair. Wards and monsters were his wife's area of expertise so the wolf didn't try to interject. He just took the opportunity to scrutinize the Japanese fox a little more closely.

 

It wasn't until Alice suggested he go speak with Red that he shifted, glancing down at her, "Sure," he murmured, nodding reluctantly, "I'm sure he's still right around back," he said as he finally stepped away from Alice and leaving the women alone a few minutes.

 

Morrigan Mindy G

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