Unwarranted Jealousy

Bloody Mary's Bar

Given to irony, Bloody Mary's Bar is decorated primarily in black and varying shades of red. From the black bench seats and chairs, black tables, black walls with chilling red blood flowing down them in a continuous manner, it's quite obvious why this bar has the name it does. Deep red mahogany makes up the floor and bar. Dangling red star lights illuminate the bar, lending to it's somewhat creepy look.

It's dark, it's cold and it's clear out. The late-night sky is a dark and brooding blue, slashed through with the silvery touch of cloud, the moonlight barely making an effect through the light pollution of the glorious city of Dallas. Bloody Mary's is busy, buzzing with an atmosphere of anticipation. It seems the upcoming parade has brought a few extra fangbangers out of the woodwork, half of them likely seeking a front row seat.

Well, that seat is taken, as is one corner of the bar. An entire booth empty except for one man, lounging languidly in place, an adjacent table occupied by a neatly attractive blonde in a trouser suit. The lounging man looks out across the crowd, face impassive. A couple of guys, not regulars by the look of things, start approaching the corner, beers in hand and joking away with each other.

One call to the estate obtained her all the information she needed to know. The person she sought was out, and not accepting visitors at the moment. Not one to give up so easily when she knows she needs to speak with someone, Chloe has been wandering around trying to find him. The thought did occur to her that he would be here, but as bars are not generally her scene (too loud, too many thoughts, too many people), she really didn't want to come.

After checking every other place she could think of though, she was left this as a last resort. Upon opening the door, she starts to feel like a walking Happy Meal. Definitely out of place amongst the sea of black and red - the trademark colors of the fangbangers. Chloe closes her eyes, briefly happy that she can't read the minds of the vampires around her.

The dark-haired young man in the corner slowly lets his attention flow around, resting on the two men. They start greeting him, happy smiley "These seats spare?" sort of greeting, and move towards some seating.

Will 's voice is lost somewhere in the general noise of the bar, though a couple of actual vampires turn around when they hear the calm invective slip from his lips, mouth opening to reveal gleaming fangs and glamour threading into their minds. His voice rises to a veritable roar as he slams them with a mighty jolt of glamour, backed up by all eight hundred years of predator. "NOW!"

The predatory snarl covering his features does not fade as the two turn, dropping their drinks to flee as fast and as far as they can from this terrible monster. Slowly, though, his features return to impassive, his position relaxes, and the blond woman at the next table continues supplying terse information.

Will is, apparently, not having a good day. This may be why no-one else is approaching his corner.

The predatory roar causes Chloe to wince. Perhaps now isn't the best time to approach. She turns toward the door, but finds her way barred by a rather nasty looking fangbanger who seems to be pushing her inward. "Stop that," she says, trying to push the man back a few steps. Only, as it happens, she's hoisted up from under the arms and carried toward Will's booth - her back to it.

"Put me down! Let me go! Quit manhandling me!"

"A present," the fangbanger says with a sneer, trying to gain Will's favor.

The attention of the Sheriff flicks up as his ears hear a familiar voice. He watches, still relaxed, as the girl is brought towards him. Erica's attention likewise shifts, although she manages a brief wince and a slight shake of her head towards the fangbanger, attempting to warn him off.

There is a dark flash of movement, and the fangbanger releases his burden as an ancient fist slams into the side of his face, Will barely holding back enough not to kill him instantly. The Sheriff follows up with a kick, full speed and force into the fleshy part of the man's midsection. The hapless, senseless fangbanger is sent across the bar, across the room, scattering patrons as he does so. Unconscious at the very least; possibly forever.

Will's spare arm flashes out, ready to catch Chloe should she stumble. "Somebody get it out of here," says he, voice level and impassive.

The stumble comes, but only after the shriek of being let go of so abruptly, and watching the poor man be beaten. Eyes wide with fear, Chloe stumbles back, and finds herself caught. Which of course draws a lot more attention from the surrounding vampires, causing her to inwardly groan.

"Hi," she says, trying not to sound utterly terrified. "Really wasn't planning on making a scene…."

The vampire working as the bouncer gathers the man up. One of the human employees checks for a pulse, and when finding one he nods to the bouncer who drags the fangbanger through the bar to the back door and tosses him outside, so that when he regains consciousness he'll find himself in an alleyway.

The Sheriff delivers a dark look of warning to the rest of the bar, a possessive arm now placed gently around Chloe's waist. "You made it," says he, levelly. "How long has it taken you to find me?"

The look does not go unnoted by the woman in his arms. Chloe has the good graces to look a tad embarrassed by the possessiveness of it, though for once she doesn't swat him or try to get away just yet. Something about being protected in such a way has a subtle ring of 'knight in shining armor' (almost quite literally).

"A few hours. I stopped by other places first, trying to track you down. Though I have the feeling that it's a bad time?"

The rest of the immortals safely warned off, Will slowly releases Chloe from his touch, a couple of measured steps carrying him back to his corner, where he slides into a seat with ease. "There are dangers in the night in this city, other than the obvious. You should be careful. Speak your piece. There is, of course, a reason you are here?"

Chloe follows, though she doesn't seat herself, and will not unless she's invited to do so. While she may not know or understand most of the rules, she's pretty sure there's a protocol to follow. "You mean other than wanting your most cordial company?" Her voice is soft, teasing, perhaps trying to cajole a better mood from him. Then she realizes she needs to be upfront with what she knows. "Bobby told me the Tyler is missing again. Disappeared."

"You do not actually like my company at the best of moments," says Will, not bothering to look at her, though he does wave a hand towards the other side of the booth, which could in the right light be taken as in invitation. "I am merely a welcome silence with the capability of speech. Or at least one would assume so." Pissy, him? Never!

The news brings a sneer to his lips, and a breath that is released slowly and quietly. "Is there information on who has taken her, or where she disappeared from? It is unlikely to be the vampires in her life." If they're going to do as they're told and follow his advice sent via messenger, of course.

A wince at his words, but Chloe slides into the booth opposite him. "Things change," she offers, again lightly. As an after thought, she asks, "Do you want to talk about what's bothering you?" She can be nice, when she puts the effort forth!

"I have no idea, just that she apparently went out on her own and didn't come back. Bobby did a bit of calling around for her sister yesterday, but I guess couldn't find anything. Could be she just forgot who she was and wandered off somewhere, but with all the media attention from the Green Oaks fallout…" Shrug.

"No," Will replies to the question, simply. "I do not wish to publicly share with a mortal woman why my mood is particularly murderous today." His attention is locked on the crowd at large, eyes touring the fangbangers with a practised, covetous gleam.

"Her particular brand of insanity is unlikely to manifest as forgetting who she is," says Will, as though he knows it intimately. His voice is still level, but not as easily as usual. "There are a number of people already looking towards the well being of the girl. What makes you think I can assist further?"

The reply is not taken to heart. Chloe just keeps her gaze upon him as neutral and unpitying as possible. "Then I won't ask again. I'm a good listener," she says, tapping at the side of her head. "I won't judge, but I'm guessing it's none of my business anyhow."

His question catches her by surprise, but she shakes her head. "I don't know if you can assist or not, but based on our last conversation, I figured you'd want to know. Being as how after speaking with her for ten minutes, I learned more about vampires than any amount of research I could have done."

Dryly, the vampire responds, "You will not judge? My dear, you do little else." Darkly humoured now, it seems, he stretches his legs ou, leaning back onto the bench-like seating to close his eyes.

"Tell me what you learned," says he. "I have nothing but her health of mind and body at heart, however she seems a magnet for trouble that is starting to become a thorn in the side of authority, both mundane and immortal."

"Like I said, things change." Which bring Chloe to another point. "The issues I had concerning Mr. Fontane have been cleared up. He has promised to leave me alone." See? She can take care of some of her own problems! Watching him, she exhales a sigh. She's perhaps still a bit self conscious, what with the glances she's getting from time to time, and the 'voices' of the surrounding fangbangers wondering if she's putting out to get such attention from someone so important.

"That one is meant to be her protector, and failing. That one has bitten her for no other apparent reason other than wanting to. That whatever mind control you lot have against humans can render someone into such a state, and that you, Mr. Grant are far more important than you make yourself seem." Beat. "That, and her lack of knowledge or capacity to understand what a claim means."

"Your relationship with Ivan is of no interest to me," says Will, dry and dark and suggestive now. Seemingly trying to take her from her ease.

"Neither of the two have broken any law," he continues, "and they are being made aware that their activities are potentially dangerous for vampire kind. Should some misguided fanatic get wind of what originally happened to the girl, which I assume you know. She does not understand the claim, so it may be deemed by authority that it is not a valid claim. How important do you believe I am?"

"What kind of game are you playing, Mr. Grant?" Chloe looks less at ease, sure, but mostly she looks hurt. She put forth a good effort to find him, just to talk to him. To /see/ him.

She distracts herself with his question. "Very important. You know it's unlikely to be one of the two that's already bothering the Tyler girl, and both the vampires and fanbangers here seem mightily interested in what you're doing with a human female like me that doesn't fit nicely into this 'scene'."

"The game where I win," replies Will, continuing directly into her mind, « and where those who play against me do not play for matches. You have potentially made your life significantly more difficult by finding me here. » The mind-speech bears an archaic accent, hard to place for those who do not know.

"So perhaps I have a function as an information-gatherer amongst my kind," Will tells her, "or perhaps I am the chieftain of the vampires in this city. Does it matter? To you?"

A twinge appears upon her face. Chloe stares across the table at him, expression darkening. "How? You have offered your protection, you have…" Her voice trails off, but the thought is apparent though it's not even voiced mentally. He claimed her, now he's acting as though he doesn't want her around. "Forget it, Mr. Grant. If you don't want me around, just say the word and you'll not hear from me again."

"The problem is that the other people in this place are now watching you with interest," he replies, quietly, just loud enough for her to hear. "The problem is that you have made yourself visible to the entire populace of vampires within Dallas, as a close friend, toy or ally of mine."

Leaning forwards, to bring himself just a little closer. « Be not so foolish, » he continues, into her mind. « Most of my words to you here have been for the benefit of others. » "I am the Sheriff of Dallas, Chloe. That means that apart from two other vampires you may come across, I am the ultimate power amongst our kind, in this city. Does that make a little more sense?"

"Then you should learn to return a call or two," Chloe says just as quietly, though looking rightly chastened. Had he only returned her calls, she would not have had to go searching for him. "I may have made myself visible, but you made sure they knew perfectly well who's protection I was under." Thus, she's not going to have too much concern… even though she glances about to see if people are still staring.

His admission causes the first faint inkling of a grin. "Much, though I don't have a clue what that means or entails." Doubtful it's like a human law enforcement officer. "Sorry I pushed my way into your evening. I… I really just wanted to make sure you knew."

"Even a creature as charming as I is not without enemies," Will replies, leaning forwards now to lean arms on his knees. Much more movement than is standard for him.

"It means that I bear the responsibility of ensuring that others of my kind do not overstep their boundaries, though I am constrained by law as much as any other." His fingers lace together, his attention drawn upwards to the patrons of the bar. "I appreciate the information, and I shall put out the feelers. When this girl is found, I may insist on her drinking of me, that we may never lose her again."

A brief look flits over Chloe's expression. One that potentially denotes a bit of jealousy, though were anyone to ask her she'd deny it. Eyes drift toward the table, staring at it quite intently until she's able to mask the expression to one of neutrality again. "No doubt you will do what you feel is necessary, though…" She exhales the tiniest of sighs. "… I suggest against it, Mr. Grant." Which is quickly followed by an explanation, "Considering what happened to her, and the beliefs of her family…" And those of her own brother. "… I would hate to see you jumped, and potentially forced to meet the sun."

"The beliefs of her family?" Will queries, mildly, as his look locks on to a girl, looking barely old enough to be drinking, her short blonde hair tousled. His eyes flick over towards Chloe, his expression somewhat amused, though the gleam in his eye speaks of something more sinister. "Do you truly believe that any mortal has the capability of surprising me, short of a sniper round delivered from half a mile distance?" It's a good point, really.

"That's why they're friends, her sister and my brother. They go to the same church." Though to keep her brother safe, she doesn't mention /what/ church. Chloe shifts her gaze to the girl, glares, then looks back at Will, still trying to be neutral. Why she's acting so possessive she has no idea. Perhaps it was his own display earlier that's causing it.

"Do I believe that any /one/ mortal has the capability of surprising you? No. Do I believe that a fanatical group of people have the forethought to leap out at you with silver netting? Yes, I truly do. If a mere chain can cause harm to you, what do you think a net will do? It would definitely weaken you, and likely give them a chance to stake you," she says, voice filled with concern.

Will actually laughs, though it is not an entirely pleasant sound, as his mind sifts through thoughts of blood, murder and rage. "This girl is family to a sect of misguided fanatics? Please do pass on the sentiment that I have listened to the words of God and followed the path of Christianity for a time likely matching the combined period of their congregation."

Slowly, Will shakes his head, now apparently thoroughly amused. "The difference between I and they, my darling girl, is that they lack experience, power, speed, strength and sense. They do not follow the path of righteous deliverance, they seek scapegoats for the failings of humanity. They do not seek to resolve, or forgive, but to adminster retribution for their jealousies and underachievements. Tell them that, and tell them I will happily discuss theology with any of them."

At least he's not laughing at her for her perceived jealousy. Chloe lifts her shoulders up in a tiny shrug. "I've never met them, but I do know that it's a relatively new church." Which is the only response he's going to get from her. Protecting Bobby is something important to her, and she doesn't want him caught up in any of this.

"Mr. Grant, to be honest… do you blame them?" It may seem to be an out there question. "From what I've heard from my brother, and what happened to those two girls… is it any wonder that humanity fears you? I doubt it's anything to do with failings and scapegoats, and all the more to do with fearing something they don't rightfully understand." Pause. "Not that I'm supporting them in anyway, but it's the same with anything. Homosexuals, African Americans… and in time, society's accepted them."

"Humanity fears what it does not understand. Argumentum ad nauseam." Will's tone is now a little more cheerful, a little less threatening. "Vampires like myself have spent many, many years ensuring that any vampire who does something that humanity should fear is punished for it," says he.

"I do blame them. I blame them for inflaming tensions, for plotting genocide, and for twisting the holy words of the Bible to their own perverse ends." His look shifts across to her. "A good Christian does not kill except in the service of God's word. To twist the word to make otherwise good people kill is to commit heresy. You know what happened to heretics." To Templars.

"Yet," Chloe points out, "considering everything you can do, the fact that you live forever, and the fact that your kind has survived on the blood of humanity for such a long time, people have reason to be fearful. A few bad apples spoil the whole bunch." She shifts a little in the booth, sliding toward him. "I know what it's like to be different, and persecuted for it from first hand experience. It's why I generally keep to myself. I know how cruel people can be, but I know how good intentioned they are as well. Sometimes it is better to be stalwart in your beliefs, whether they be perverse and twisted words of Christianity. Sometimes, such beliefs are all people have left." She's not trying to argue with him, really. Though he may look at her funny when she admits, "I'm agnostic."

Again, Will laughs, a rich sound not often heard in this place. "There are wonders in this world that you may one day see that will impress upon you that there is no possibility that the hand of God was not involved." Slowly standing, his attention directed again towards the short-haired blonde, he does continue.

"You do not deny their perverted words. When I see you again, you will give me good reason not to obliterate the nest of heresy and genocide. Otherwise I will." Does he really mean that? "Now, if you will excuse me. Erica will take care of your travel and needs."

Quick, measured steps take the vampire towards the short-haired blonde, who meets him with a dazzling smile. Barely a moment later, he has her lifted effortlessly into his arms, and starts to walk out.

"I have many good reas-" He's brushing her off on his assistant? Chloe looks to Erica, offering her an apologetic shrug before turning back in time to see him lift the blonde. Now there are two things that Chloe is positive of, one - that she dislikes being brushed aside as though she were an insignificant entity; two - that he's playing some sort of game to make her jealous.

Unfortunately, it works. "I can take care of my own travel needs, I don't need to be hoisted up like a /child/." While she cannot move as swiftly as he can, she stalks toward the door with a huffy tone to her voice. "Thank you for your protection, Mr. Grant, but I don't think I'll be needing it any further."

"A tendency to the shrill, my dear," says Will lightly, as he goes through the door. Once outside, he begins to move, carrying the blonde with practised ease. « Considering the alternative, which I do not feel you would agree to, jealousy should not really be a part of your make-up in this situation. »

Erica, meanwhile, follows Chloe, her Carolina lilt pleasant and friendly. "He's feeding," says she. "C'mon, Chloe, I'll get you home."

Chloe stops at the door, turning back just long enough to shake her head at Erica. "No thank you. I'm quite capable of taking care of myself. Wouldn't have survived as long as I have if I couldn't." Beat. "Tell your boss thanks but no thanks." Then she slips through the door. Erica can chase after her if she wants, but Chloe has every intention of walking across the city to her apartment, without bothering to stop.

Erica doesn't bother, just calling after her, "You take care of yourself, Chloe! Gimme a call some time!" Then she's shaking her head, having long since gotten used to Will's moods.

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