Bailey twitched and sat up. Vampires. He worked for their court. If she could get drugs, and get in she'd be set. Some of them would pay out the ass to get high. Not to mention they were easier to deal with. To look at. She tried not to sound eager. Hello, meal ticket.
"So what? You a vamp?" Bailey shook her head, "No, of course not. I can see that. You're human. I think." Bailey couldn't tell if someone was a shifter. She couldn't see their beasts entwined within the way she could see the magic holding the vampires together. Even though she wasn't having an 'episode', time and experience had given her a knack for picking out vampires. "Why you at the court?"
"I'm a teacher," he said without any trace of irony. It was quite true, after all. "Working with a special needs student." He was going to have to tell Colin that he was 'Special Needs'. Once he was sure his boyfriend was unarmed.
The waitress came back with the potato skins, Joseph gave her another of those brilliantly friendly smiles. It might be coming clear by now that he found real amusement in tormenting the cranky by being all friendly and polite at them. When they were alone again he asked, "How about you, what made you decide on Seattle?"
"You teach special needs vampires? How does that work?" Bailey was still stuck on the whole 'vampire court' thing. The vampires she had donated to had been unexpected encounters. She wanted to get in as a regular donor. If she could find one that would just pay for everything, that would be ideal.
The potato skins arrived and Bailey shoved one in her mouth. It was hot, and burned, but she was too hungry to care.
"'S where I ended up." She talked with her mouth full of food. "Figured it was far enough from home." She finished chewing and shoved a second right after it.
An easy laugh as he picked up his first potato skin, blowing on it to cool it. Just because he could heal burns didn't make them any more fun. "No, I tutor a bear shifter that's a vampire's pet, teaching him about being a werebear and about how to move through society smoothly."
He watched her eat and vaguely considered ordering her a second sandwich, but decided that would be pushing his luck.
So instead he pushed it another way. "Has it been? Far enough, I mean?"
Bailey's table manners were atrocious, but about what you'd expect a street kid to have. Bailey chewed with her mouth open, talking around the food. She was too hungry to chew slowly, so it was inhaled. This was the first hot meal she'd had in days.
"You a shifter? Bear shifter? Ain't never met one of you." She still wondered how she could use him to get in with the vampires. All she needed was one. No immediate ideas presented themselves, so she settled for stuffing another potato skin in her mouth.
She shrugged at his next question. It was never far enough. How far did you have to go to stop seeing the way people were going to die? To stop seeing their bodies decay? Far enough from her parents? Possibly. But not far enough from the memories.
With that boundless calm that had to be his most irritating trait, Joseph smiled at Jasmine and took a bite of his potato, chewed and swallowed, even wiped his lips politely before answering, "I think the chances are high that there's no such thing as far enough away from whatever it is you're running from. I was just wondering whether that was something you'd figured out or if you still thought that miles were going to do you any good."
Bailey pointedly shoved another potato skin in her mouth. Fuck you and your manners. Joseph was inexorably polite and nice. It was the nice that got her. As much as he insisted he didn't have an agenda, Bailey couldn't help but think he was lying.
"The fuck does it matter to you? I've stopped running. Miles anyway." The food was killing the last little bit of the high. Benzo's were easier to come down from, but food tended to kill the high faster. Her shoulder came up and her head rolled. A sort of twitch. An effort to stop whatever was happening in her head. "It's never far enough."
"I'm making conversation." He didn't even sound like he was having to work particularly hard to be patient, or like he was condescending to explain. Just like he was continuing their chat. "I suppose we could talk TV or politics if you prefer, but I mostly watch old series on Netflix and the only politics I care about are monster politics."
Joseph smiled at her. "Do you think there's anything that would actually be far enough? Is there an escape?"
...to Seattle, with all its thousand contradictions. A city of silicon dreams and bloody nightmares. Ruled by a child queen with diamond-tipped fangs, occupied by artists and shapeshifters, computer programmers and ancient vampires, college students and creatures of myth. Living (and unliving) together and once the sun goes down it's...
Core game plot, graphics and skin are by Briar. All source material from the Anita Blake novels belongs to Laurell K. Hamilton, the Penguin Group, Jove Books and their respective lawyers. Please don't sue, we're already poor.
In-character content, help files, and original plots belong to the staff and members. If you see something cool you'd like to play with, ask. Given that we're using somebody else's mythos, it'd be pretty lame if we refused to share.