cian_oneill: (Cian)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
The flickering of lights from a passing ambulance illuminated the alley briefly, the vehicle hurrying on its way to a callout somewhere in the suburbs. Cian lowered himself to the ground from the stairs that ran down the wall opposite the portal, adjusting his jacket and scrubbing his fingers through his hair. He scratched his cheek, the slight rasp of stubble a little more common these last few days.

His sound of his footsteps bounced off the walls in a soft echo as he approached the phone booth, the number now known to all who were helping out with the 'watch' being maintained on the portal. The canteen of water he'd left inside earlier was still there and he was soon wiping the back of his hand across his mouth after downing half the contents. The weather was warming up, and his patrol earlier had meant he hadn't had time to eat, or have anything to drink before heading up from the Cove.

The protective shield the old witch had put up seemed to be holding, and Cian couldn't help but wonder how long it could be maintained, and whether it would last as long as the portal. It had stopped anything from the portal escaping out of the alley, but didn't prevent anyone from this world from passing through it.

He heard something behind him and turned, hand already moving to the weapons stashed behind the phone box, eyes flickering with gold flecks momentarily.
cian_oneill: (Default)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
After getting the number out of the phone box, and the market, Cian went to Ragnarok first, leaving messages there for the woman he remembered as Sabra, and Daniel, not at all sure either of them came there, but figuring if they went anywhere it would likely be there. He had no way of knowing how to contact them any other way.

Rhiannon had also mentioned a witch could help, so he made his way to the store he'd come to know was reliable, and where he'd been a few times for things, including Echo's pendant, and ingredients for the things Annie had taught him to make for himself. There was a young woman, Melody, serving and he asked her to pass on a message to Jazz, to contact him if she had some time, and was willing to help deal with a nasty situation that had come up suddenly.

"What sort of situation?" Melody asked, eyeing the man for a moment as she scribbled down his message and a contact number.

Cian looked at her, and wasn't about to expand until the young woman cocked her head to one side and told him, "I'm Jazz's... apprentice, you could say."

Cian eyed her for a moment, then following his instincts he told her briefly what he and Rhiannon had found, and where. "Rhiannon's standing guard at the moment, and trying to get in touch wi' some others, but at the moment we've no idea what i' might take t' seal it again, or if there'll be others."

Mel's eyes had widened a little as the man described the portal, and she nodded as she picked up the note she'd written. "I'll call Jazz and let her know," she told him. "She might be able to at least go and look, and help your friend, in case she needs it."

Cian was slightly relieved, not having liked the idea of leaving Rhiannon alone, but needing to get the word out to some reinforcements.

After he left the store he headed for Seventh Circle. He'd remembered a couple of others who might be able to at least stand guard, and the fight manager would know of some others who could be trusted.

After he left the club he headed back to the alley, the news of the events in Searchlight having had him put in a call to Echo, leaving a message on her machine: "Echo, it's Cian. I'm up in town and heard about tonight down there. Just wanted to check you are alright. I'll call again later."

He wanted to check with Rhiannon before heading back to Searchlight, let her know what he'd heard, and more importantly, see that she was alright. An ambulance, lights flashing and sirens wailing went through an intersection up ahead, and he had to wonder for a moment whether it was another victim of whatever had come through the portal, or just a usual run-of-the-mill medical emergency.
rhiannon_lee: (brick wall)
[personal profile] rhiannon_lee
Rhiannon watched as a customer exited the E-Z-Mart with a bag of sour cream potato chips and an orange juice. He juggled the juice into the crook of his arm and opened the bag. She heard him chewing from across the lot, unaware that anything peculiar was happening in the alley to his left. In fact, so long as nobody needed a pay phone, they wouldn’t find it.

Of course, that didn’t mean that nothing would find them.

The slayer rubbed her bare forearm. “Cold air. Do you feel that?” She looked at Cian. They stood on the pavement at the foot of the alley. He had been insistent that they go immediately to assess things, and that urgency worried Rhiannon because he was never that rushed about anything.
cian_oneill: (Cian)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
It had taken over an hour to answer questions, three times, and be allowed to leave, and Cian wasn't sure what time it was when he finally made it back to Rhiannon's place. He'd gone into the market almost on auto-pilot, paying for the purchases with money he didn't even count and receiving change he hadn't even checked.

All he could think about all the way through the dark was the eyeballs of the dying man. Peter Green, and his fiance Fiona Hindmarsh, now carted away to the morgue for examination by the ME, who had been more than a little stunned at what he'd seen. Enough to sober him up pretty quickly.

Ghosts. That had been Peter's last word, and Cian had seen the disbelief in the detective's eyes when Cian had told them the same thing each time they'd asked in the different ways they'd put the question to him.

He'd left out the part about the smell. Having to explain his acute senses wasn't something he was about to embark on, especially in circumstances like this. "Aye, ghosts," he said for the sixth time when another detective had asked him again.

Rhiannon wasn't home from the bar job when he arrived, something he could tell when he turned into the street, her car not in the driveway. He pushed the door into the darkened garage open and without turning on the lights proceeded to put the items he'd picked up from the market away. The light from the refrigerator was relatively bright, and his eyes narrowed a little at the sudden brilliance. He took out a beer and uncapped it, the top going in the bin as he made his way across to the couch, and sat down. A swig later and finally the scent of the alley and the corpses started to recede.
maddy_ricks: (Default)
[personal profile] maddy_ricks
Maddy was drunk. So very drunk. She tottered on a pair of ill-advised heels and stared at a yellow concrete wall. It was the side of an E-Z-mart, three blocks off the main drag in Las Vegas where the neighborhood started to get shifty. She had a bottle of booze in a brown paper bag, super classy, and a hot dog with extra relish. She was already dreading throwing it up later.

A few yards away, a bum huddled on the curb next to a phone booth. Maddy lifted her hooch in a respectful salute. “Exes, man,” she said. The bum lifted his drink in solidarity.

Five minutes with Gus had really fucked with her head and put her in full scale rebellion. Be a good girl, Maddy. Play nice. Join up with Team White. Well, what had Team White ever done for her? And since when was he on it?!

She wiped her nose and decided this spot was as good as any. Under her arm pit, Maddy held a can of spray paint. She shook it and a ball rattled in the canister. The paint went on too heavy and wet, but it wasn’t important to be anal-retentive. With three slow lines and a circular dot, the outline of a door was obvious. Maddy dropped the partial can.

“Let’s see… who shall we invite over for drinks?” She whirled on the bum, whose name was actually Sal, and gave him a bright (slightly crazed) smile. “No ideas? Hm? Well… This is Vegas. We’ll let the chips fall where they may.”

With pinched fingers, Maddy retrieved the key and its chain from her neckline. Then she closed her eyes and thought of…

Nothing. The Void. Which was no void at all, because it was full of entities, doorways, chaos. Then, before her brain could pull a Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man Maneuver, she pressed the key to the makeshift door knob. There was a click. A slow creak of hinges. An unusually charged breeze on her face, an otherworldly breeze that smelled faintly of mothballs and ozone.

And that is how Maddy left the wall, with a wide opening into Nowhere, and no clue what waited on the opposite side. She turned in the direction of home. "Later,” she told Sal around a mouthful of hot dog.

Yeah. Let the chips fall where they may.
cian_oneill: (BW Sunglasses)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
County Tyrone, Northern Ireland, 1973

If he squinted his eyes, rolled his eyeballs up, then cracked his eyelids open and slowly rolled his eyeballs down, he could begin to make out shapes and movement. His body ached all over, and the cold stone floor beneath his back seemed to be drawing all the heat from his body.

Which on thinking about was maybe not such a bad thing. His body ached, all over, and he let his eyelids seal closed again as he realised he'd never felt pain like this, not even in the worst of hits he'd taken on the field, or the aftermath of the odd post-game drinking session fights. This was the sort of pain that came from inside, from the very beds of his fingernails right through to the joints of his toes. Every part of him seemed to be screaming louder than the other, and the cacophony in his head was getting louder and louder...

"Cian, lad, y' c'n hear me?"
Read more... )
wolfs_daughter: (Conversing)
[personal profile] wolfs_daughter
Echo didn't know where Cian lived, and she respected the other were's privacy too much to ask. But she'd gotten the phone number of the marina from directory assistance, then called the business office during regular hours. Now that the weather was warming up, Cottonwood Cove had more customers. She was thinking of coming out when high summer came, since there were no other swimming opportunities close by.

The reason she'd decided to seek the Irishman out was because she had to tell <>someone abut the progress she was making with her Wolf side, and Cian was the obvious candidate. She loved Papa, and beyond that she respected him, but he wouldn't have understood her reasons for exploring her Otherness after all this time. She didn't want to have to face his possible disapproval.

The drive to the Cove was uneventful, and the lot was moderately full. The hybrid parked her vehicle in a slot, killed the engine and got out. She hoped she didn't catch the man when he was busy.

Empty Pool

Mar. 8th, 2014 03:29 pm
rhiannon_lee: (pic#6816067)
[personal profile] rhiannon_lee
Needles, California
Population: 4,010
Hottest town this side of Hell.


The last part had been added onto the sign in white spray paint. Needles, California was a pit stop on interstate 40 where the temperature regularly spiked into the 120’s during the dry summers. It had been sited in Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath and used as a backdrop in the movie Repo Man. It was as bleached as an old blacktop, weather worn and tired as a middle-aged prostitute.

The highway was dotted with kitche motels, desperate to make a buck off the town’s famous name. The Last Leg Inn. The Crooked Wheel. Route 66. Most were cramped but clean places with tiny gift shops, custom post cards and souvenir tees. ‘I bought this shirt on Route 66!’ The only sounds were the whoosh of passing cars, the hum of a struggling Coke machine, and tiny grains of sand blowing against the buildings. Like Searchlight, if it had a marketing panache.

A cityscape would’ve better suited Rhiannon, but Needles was where she jumped from the cab of a truck, and Needles was where she stayed. The motel was a series of miniature cabins which might have been cute in a wooded area but just looked bland here. Out back, there was an empty concrete swimming pool surrounded by chain link. At night, she climbed the fence and descended into the pale bowl. There she drank too much and stared at an overwhelming number of stars. Once she bought a couple of pills from a letchy-looking neighbor and downed those, too. In a pleasant haze of booze and barbiturates, she imagined water pouring over the lip of the pool; in this hallucination, she was weighted to the bottom and she watched, calmly, as the column of water deepened.

A screeching owl shook her out of it.

Tonight she was in there, again, stone sober because she knew Cian was coming. Just felt it.
rhiannon_lee: (Default)
[personal profile] rhiannon_lee
Rhiannon slipped into the cabin with a key Cian had made available for her use. It was just past midnight and the house was quiet and dark. She didn't worry about startling him awake; he would catch her scent before wondering if she was an intruder. She set her backpack by the door and kicked off her unlaced boots. The rest of her clothes -- jeans, a thermal shirt, and a navy zippered hoody -- she left on. The hallway to his room was dim but her eyes adjusted as she made her way there.

She just needed to see him, needed to kiss him, before she left town and dealt with her problem. The problem of Duncan. Nothing in life could move forward without resolving, severing this piece of her past.

Her knee compressed the mattress. "Hey. Are you awake?"


Thread: open to Cian
birthright_npc: (blow confetti)
[personal profile] birthright_npc
The festivities on the Las Vegas strip were your basic police nightmare. A mile-long stretch of the boulevard was blocked off to traffic so that revelers could stagger drunkenly down the middle of the street. Food trucks and street vendors sold pizza, cheese steaks, popcorn, cotton candy, and plastic cups full of beer. Some sold pre-mixed margaritas and daiquiris. At each major intersection, a stage showcased performers and music pumped from speakers mounted on the light posts.

It didn't seem to matter that it was December in the desert. There was plenty of body heat to go around.

At midnight, several large screens would broadcast a countdown before fireworks lit the sky.

[Thread: Open to Anyone]
birthright_npc: (Vegas)
[personal profile] birthright_npc
The grand ballroom of the Skylark Hotel was awash in shades of forest green and gold. The charity ball had been arranged to benefit a local children's hospital, and so a large percentage of the proceeds from the door tickets and bar would be donated to renovate the facility. A two-story Christmas tree towered over the buffet tables of festive finger foods and chocolate fountain, and people had placed unwrapped toys under the limbs to be delivered to the hospital the next day. Champagne flowed freely. There were two stages for the live jazz musicians that would play all night. Santa's scantily clad elves wandered about the room with trays of shrimp and caviar. A dance floor took up the center of the space underneath a gleaming chandelier and there were beautifully decorated round tables on the edges of the room.

The ticket price was manageable, and a few tickets had gone out free for radio promotions and the like.

Luckily for the undead, the decor did not include wall-to-wall mirrors, though there were a few on the high ceiling.

In various corners, Vegas performance artists entertained to ooohs and aaahs. For instance, there was a man eating a gleaming sword in the corner.

Thread: Open to Anyone
wolfs_daughter: (Aw)
[personal profile] wolfs_daughter
With only two days until Christmas, Echo was celebrating the holidays in her own way. She'd made some popcorn, then strung it up with cranberries she'd bought at the grocery store. A small artificial tree resided in her living room. There weren't any presents underneath, but she'd put tinsel and one string of lights on it. The season made her miss Seattle.

When Cian took her home from the meteor site, he'd mentioned that he worked at the marina in Cottonwood Cove. She suspected that the other were was guarded about his life, and in any case her shyness prevented her from pressing for details, But she got some pamphlets about the place at the community center and did some reading up. She'd finally bought a television, a used black-and-white model, but because Searchlight only got a few channels there wasn't much to watch during the day.

The hybrid parked the van in the marina's lot, locked the vehicle up behind her. She wondered if they offered cruises on Christmas day. Maybe she should have called ahead and asked if Cian was working today. If he wasn't here, she wouldn't know where else to look.
cian_oneill: (Default)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
[a paper bag containing a non-descript wrapped item sits on Echo's van's step. A note is attached.]

Unwrapping the item reveals... )
cian_oneill: (Default)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
Since the night the meteor had crashed into the desert Cian had had restless sleep, waking up in the morning with the sheets tangled around limbs, hair damp with perspiration and pillows sometimes pushed to the floor. Something was putting him on edge, and he didn't like the feeling. He knew if he didn't have control of what was going on with him, things could get very bad. Fortunately the charter that had been booked for the next day, Saturday, was cancelled, a dose of flu having sent most of the guests to their beds, instead of the boat.

As he walked along the road that lead up the small slope to where his home was, removed from the rest of the village, up on the foothills of the mountains, he rubbed at the back of his neck. Even he could feel the tension there, and he rubbed at it, uselessly. He reached his front stairs, walked up three and stopped, turned and sat down. He rested his elbows on his knees, hands hanging loosely, as he looked up at the darkening sky. Closing his eyes he inhaled deeply, slowly, letting the night air invade his senses, the scent of some jackrabbits that lived not far across the road, the dust that always lay along the deck, the aroma of the handwash he'd used before walking home, a myriad of others all swirled and delivered their message. But there was something, still something he hadn't been able to define, and he tried to find it amongst all the others clamouring with their stories.
birthright_npc: (Searchlight)
[personal profile] birthright_npc
The night was clear and cold. A weather front had blown through the day prior and dropped the evening temps into the thirties. A pale sliver of last-quarter moon hung over the desert, its edges sharp, and only a few wisps of clouds obscured the stars. Into this stark landscape a meteor streaked just before midnight.

It landed on the outskirts of town at the end of a dirt path. The land was part of an old horse ranch, abandoned in the early 1970s, so no family emerged from the cabin to investigate the fiery hole in their property, and no animals paced nervously along the fences.

A cactus sizzled and popped as it caught fire near the crater.

[Thread: Open to Anyone]
cian_oneill: (Cian)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
Cian had gone back to Seventh Circle again, still not satisfied with what he'd learnt, knowing there was a good chance still to find out more about the attack on Hallowe'en.

This time he went to the bout manager and got a headsup on the fights that night, the card showing a number of attractions he knew immediately would bring in some patrons he could talk to.

He leaned against the wall, drink in hand, able to see both the entrance to the bar and the doors through to the area where combatants could go before and after their bouts. It wasn't long before he saw a face he recognised and made his way across to talk to them. Half an hour later he was walking out the door, face set, and mind ticking over. It wasn't just what he learned about the Hallowe'en attack, it was more, what he and Rhiannon had talked about even on the first night they had met.

Something, or someone, was drawing a lot of demonic attention to the area, and it wasn't going away.
cian_oneill: (Siofra face)
[personal profile] cian_oneill
It was after dawn, the sun lifting above the south eastern horizon to commence its daily journey.

The crevice ran the full length of the large boulder, too narrow to reach down into, especially with a paw as large as Siofra's. The feline paced the length of it, finally dropping to the ground beside the boulder and sniffing around the base, finding the point where crevice met dirt. An eye lined up, staring into the darkness, and waited.

The brilliant orb continued to rise, the shadow cast by the cluster of rocks behind Siofra slowly descending on the face of the boulder.

The feline remained still, eye trained on the darkness. Slowly it started to dissolve, the inky black lightening to a dull grey, the orange brown of the face of the inside of the boulder slowly becoming distinguishable in the early morning light. A shape became discernible, the eye moves closer, body shifting slightly. Enough light is finally reaching in, the sun for a brief moment illuminating the full length of the crevice, and its contents.

Muscles move smoothly, the large body lifting from the dusty ground, tiny swirls of dust twisting and dancing on the cool desert air, disturbed by the movement. A paw lifted, momentarily pressing against the opening, then returning to the ground. Focus intensifies as the bright light starts to succumb to the movement of the planets and the light illuminating the crevice starts to fade, moving on to another surface. The greying doesn't lessen Siofra's attention until the direct light is completely gone, the surfaces now only reflecting the general light of the day, rather than the direct sunlight.

A few minutes later the large cat is standing on top of the boulder again, surveying the area. A few minutes more and he departs, a steady trot maintained as he heads back to Cottonwood Cove.

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