Monday night, 11:00 PM. The moon sits high over the Asian city and a clear sky gives sight to a shimmering stars. Although nightfall, the balmy weather makes for a warm night. Temps: 17C/62F lows and 25C/77F highs.
skin credit goes to miss texas, custom structure scripts go to black, and the toggle cbox goes to subdevo. credit for mini profile goes to bee.
Arie glances up, following Zach's pointed finger and spots the red binding instantly. It's a unique color for a book and stands in stark contrast to the earth tone covers possessed by the other tomes on the shelf. He wonders what Zach wants the book for, noticing that they're in the section associated with mythologies and folklore.
Though tall, Arie stands only a couple inches above his employee and decides against utilizing the same tactic that caused the mess to begin with. And with Wolfgang nearby, he doesn't dare risk using his powers; he's too cautious for that.
"I need a ladder..." he announces as he pulls his gaze from the shelf and looks for some mechanical assistance. He spots a short step stool nearby. "That'll do."
The levitating wiccan makes his way over to fetch the stool, sparing a glance towards his brother and the strange man who hangs out in bookshops late at night. What's his story?
In the next moment, Arie is atop the stool and pulling the book down from the shelf. He hands it down to Zach. "There you go." He clambers down a moment later with a huff of breath. "What's it for anyway?"
(No you don't. Just levitate your ass three inches and you'll be fine…) Zach watches as the wiccan collects the step-ladder. (He's such a chicken. Always worried about being caught.) Exposure was never a concern for the young shaman. Not when he grew up in a community where magic and mundane lifestyles blend so seamlessly. The mortals of his iwi know what the Lyons are capable of, and they don't use that knowledge against them or take advantage of it. They are the revered pillars of the community, using their magic to protect and guide the iwi.
"Thanks." Zach takes the book with an eager grip and begins thumbing through it haphazardly. He flicks past various myths, with illustrations of monstrous creatures that are bound to capture the young man's imagination. (Sweet. It's better than I thought) The affirmation brings a smile to Zach's lips. He's found a good one. (Definitely worth all the book drama.)
"What's it for?" The shaman echoes Arie's question. A confused look etches across his face, what does he think it's for? "Just reading. I like this kinda stuff." Zach is unsure what the wiccan expects him to be doing with the book. The thought of demonology research doesn't even cross his mind. Zach has never had to face the forces of evil. Sure he knows about them - his mother would frequently warn of the dangers that lurk within the world. But surrounded by the protection of his iwi, Zach grew up without ever laying eyes on a single demon, warlock or monster. They're somebody else's problem.
Rylan's still unsure what to make of this man. Part of him feels obligated to keep him company out of simple politeness, but there's something awkward and off-putting about him. He doesn't much want to divulge information about himself, though that could just be Rylan's own sub-par conversationalist skills.
The guy, this Wolfgang, does keep the conversation going however. Rylan's aware enough to realize that the subject at hand has been changed, and though he doesn't like it, he can't really bitch about it. Neither of them care much for discussing themselves. Besides, if he tells this guy the truth, then him and Arie are both probably going to look like lunatics.
Seconds later Arie's voice echoes through his head. 'I dunno,' he relays back instantly. 'Haven't been alone long enough to figure anything out dude... but i'm not so sure about him...' Still unsure why, some of his fascination, suspicion, and apprehension surrounding the dude seeps through their mental link to Adrian. He's probably just being silly or misanthropic, seeing enemies in every day people.
After a moment, he opens his mouth to let some generic lie spill out of it, "Uh, oh, well my brother collects books and stuff, I think he reads them too. I guess I'm just here for support?" he says, as if he isn't sure why he's here at all. "He's got a bit of an obsession." Rylan smiles widely as he attempts to divert the attention towards Arie, who is still wandering around with Zach amongst the shelves of books.
The wisecrack elicits a broad smile from Wolfgang, who is trying to come across as friendly, disarming, and normal. "Well, there are worse obsessions to have," he says. The banality inherit to nearly all small talk is now sucking the life out of this conversation. Famine doesn't care to talk about books. And what if he's talking to the wrong brother? He doesn't care to waste his breath on mortals either.
The only conversation worth having is where to find the third harbinger. And that's a conversation to be had between him and a newly recruited hellfire conjurer.
"I guess I'll go look around some more while I can," he points the thumb of his un-pocketed hand somewhere behind him. Anything to get out of this conversation. "I hope you and your brother find something nice for the collection." Wolfgang turns on his heels and walks to another row of bookshelves. He passes the one where Arie and Zach stand conversing about whatever and situates himself in the one just next to theirs. Meandering down the aisle, his eyes cut through the pages and lock onto the three men on the other side of the case.
What could Famine learn by observing? Maybe a lot, especially if the three got comfortable and forgot he was milling about. Maybe nothing if they were seasoned at keeping their secrets. My money's on the goofball to screw it up for everyone, he thinks to himself.
Tonight, Maggie's thoughts are centered on one thing—
Warming up, intellectually, for the task is always fun. Running a bubble bath, rolling a joint, throwing on some Ella Fitzgerald — it's all part of her process. A smile tugs at her mouth. She might even fuck with some leftover sugar cookies. (Bliss.) Maggie slips her briefcase into the crook of her arm, wrapping a manicured hand around the front doorknob. Breezing into the bookshop, she pauses.
She rolls her eyes immediately. (Ugh...) A flicker of irritation disrupts her mood; yet, she relaxes quickly. She loves her business. Still, nights like this one are rare. Maggie wants to be creative and focus on herself. (These hoes better do more than peruse.)
She cuts a look at the back of a familiar head. Good twin? Bad twin? Raising a brow, she taps into her divine sight. She's hit with a wave of knowledge. Human. Lawful good. Her face relaxes in a cordial smile. (Good twin.) Maggie nods her head in greeting to Arie, eyes flickering to his friend. Then her gaze shifts to the petite man. He's wearing a suit.
A designer suit.
Intrigued, Maggie stops in her tracks. (Bookdealer?) "Finding everything okay, sir?"
Wolfgang isn't long trying to observe the men from between the shelf space when another nuisance pops up. This one has estrogen.
The woman comes onto the same aisle as him, deciding for some blasted reason that he should be the customer she stops to speak with. Perhaps his being a new face in the area has made him too novel; still, now he must entertain this fool too.
The briefcase she carries makes her look orderly. Business-like. One guess is that she works here, but she could just as easily be stopping by the shop after a hard day's work somewhere else. However, shoppers rarely ask their fellow patrons if they're finding things all right. "Oh, yeah," he tries to lie convincingly. He reaches for another book on the shelf, this one about a fallen religious cult leader living in South America. "I'm just looking around for the most part," he says, probably to Maggie's chagrin, "but I like the place. Do you work here?"
It was becoming a little hectic with all these new characters joining the game. But Wolfgang kind of liked hectic. He was confident that he'd get what he wanted in the end anyway, but these would-be complicating agents became fun obstacles in Famine's eyes. At least this one didn't dump books on me, he told himself.
Wolfgang reaches up to grab a book. His ring, immediately, catches Maggie's eye. She knits her brows together. (Is that the omega symbol?) Not wanting to appear rude, she forces herself to reconnect with the customer's gaze. "I'm just looking around for the most part..."
Maggie flashes a Corporate smile. (I hate people.)
"But I like the place."
"Wonderful..." she says, beginning to turn on her heel. "Take your time." She almost grimaces, frustrated when those words leave her mouth. (Shut up, Maggie.) The shop owner turns, verbally backtracking. "I mean, we also have an extensive online—"
"Do you work here?"
"No," she shakes her head, "I own the store." Maggie, in spite of her best efforts, steals another look at his ring.
"Are you in a fraternity?"
The question is causal, almost a throwaway. Maggie isn't the type to prod; she's just making conversation. Still, the prophet would be lying if she said she wasn't interested in hearing his response.
"A book," Arie replies, noncommittally, as his eyes drift upward to peruse titles on book spines that he has no interest in. "Maybe two."
(Saved by the bell..)
Arie glances towards the shop's entrance to see the owner, Maggie, glide in from the night, a warm breeze on her heels. He can tell from the glisten of recognition in her eyes that she knows it's him - and not Rylan - as she smiles and nods in his direction as a greeting. Rylan has often commented that she isn't as polite with him.
Once she's out of sight, Arie is left with only his klutzy shopboy for company. And his brother's permanent residence in his head. His gaze linger on the pair through the shelves, bits of their rather boring conversation passing through.
(We should ask Maggie about the spider demon. She might be able to speed up our search.)
"Shouldn't you be out on the town? Enjoying your youth? I know it's Monday, but I don't recall that ever stopping a teenager before."
Zach arches a brow as Arie offers his guarded reply, but the young shaman doesn't think too much into it. His boss has always seemed like the introverted type. Private and deflective, even about matters of seemingly little importance.
As Maggie enters the shop, Zach takes note of the familiar nod she shares with his boss. It's clear that they're on a friendly basis, and the shaman wonders how often the Weiss twins come to the store. This is only Zach's first time himself, even with it being just a short distance from home. And in classic Lyon style, he managed to leave his mark upon the store. Thank god Maggie seems ignorant to the chaos.
"A Monday is not the issue. Money is." A cheeky smile cuts across Zach's face. "But if my wonderful boss was willing to give me a pay rise…" He leaves the statement hanging. A little extra money would make a world of difference. Though Zach can't exactly begrudge Arie - the wiccan has been good to him and pays more than minimum wage. Plus, it's not like The Sleeping Tealeaf is raking in the money.
"Although we got some drink in on the weekend. You and Rylan are welcome to come over for a few after here if you fancy it?" Zach looks over his shoulder, searching for where the demonic twin has taken himself. "Nothing too wild. I know a couple oldies like you two wouldn't hack the hangover in the morning." The young man laughs impishly. (I wonder what he's like drunk…)
What is it these fraternities? Famine already knows why she'd ask. He looks down at his ring and then looks back at Maggie, establishing eye contact. "You know, you are the second person tonight to ask me that," he says through a chuckle. He was starting up a brotherhood, so maybe he should just starting answering yes to this question. "I guess I just look like the fraternity type or something."
Without having answered her question, Wolfie tries to move this thing along. "If I need anything I'll come find you. But I know it's late, so I'll try not to need anything." Hopefully the playful joke is enough to make Mora leave him be.