Dangerous Dealings

Deep Ellum

Just a few blocks from Downtown, Deep Ellum acts as the arts and entertainment district of the city. With a myriad of live music venues, theaters, and a few small galleries, it has become the nightlife hotspot for the city. In addition to the usual arts, the are is prone to gaffiti art and murals, some of which appear overnight.
Deep Ellum is also becoming known as Vampire Central, thanks to the city's first and only vampire accommodating establishment - the Hotel Camilla.

It's night time in the city of Dallas; the winter's chill is still to the air and there's even the occasional drift of flurries dotting the darkened sky. The stars would be a wonder to see this evening but sadly it is not in the cards. Something else not happening? An easy search. The wisest thing she could do, ever, is to begin collecting contact information. When one is insane they don't really think about these things so much.
As dangerous as it may be, this is yet another night where Faith Rose Tyler is out in search of someone. It's been some time since she's seen him and so much has happened since then. With very little to go on the young woman wanders the streets in hopes of some night actually finding Hiro. When she does she will not be making the same mistake a second time and will ensure that she can reach him again.

Word travels fast among vampires, and when the right ears hear that the emancipated Tyler girl is looking for the hatchetman, it doesn't take long before it gets back to Hiro. Rose gets deliberately delayed by a genial-looking doorman… just long enough for Hiro to pick up the trail and catch up. Discarding his Fading as he suddenly steps out of the sparse crowds, the Japanese man is dressed in a heavy overcoat and hat over his suit. "Thanks Paul, I'll take it from here," he says politely to the doorman, his hand neatly cupping Rose's elbow. "What are you doing here, Rose?" he says in a calm, even tone.

Mild distractions aren't unusual and honestly there's nothing wrong with the doorman. He isn't running in fear at the sight of her so he's okay in her book! There is something to be said, however, for people randomly appearing close to her and reaching for her. Faith's gut response is to flail and even try to attack this new person but thankfully she's careful enough about the situation not to do this. Instead she turns an icy gaze to Hiro before she can finally look up into his eyes and realize that it is him. People always look so much different when she's sane.
"Looking for you, actually." The response finally comes, but there are no super excited gestures or attempts to hug him. Rose actually seems quite different, or it could just be that Paul is around. "Which is a lot harder than I remember it being."

Hiro has spent almost two lifetimes stalking bad people; he picks up on the change immediately. "I do have a contact form at the AVL. Which might be just a /little/ less perilous than wandering around here by yourself." He gently escorts her away from the doorman. "Not that I'm displeased to see you. How are you feeling?" His dark eyes are, as always, somewhat inscrutable.

"No offense, Hiro, but I'd much rather not go there if I can avoid it." That's a sudden twist in behavior but likely she has a good explanation for it. Hopefully. "So that left the streets. Besides, I'm not afraid." That is a bold face lie and one that he very likely can pick up on. Where she normally wasn't afraid she is now frightened.
Once they move away from the doorman she begins to soften. Baby steps. "It's hard to explain how I'm feeling." Faith seems to have many issues, but isn't sure just how much news he's current on. "But those false fangs finally came off so people aren't trying to stake me anytime I'm outside. During the day." After that flash of anger she smiles, feeling good to be able to actually talk to someone. "But before I forget, since that seems to be something that happens regularly in my life, I really want to thank you." So much so, in fact, that she stops to look up at him, directly into those eyes. "Really. For everything."

Hiro got the full details elsewhere, and if the VVEM has any sense, they'll move. To Alaska. "Fair enough," he replies. He pauses as she does, looking down at her. Perhaps really seeing that she's cogent, that her mind is reassembled and glued together (more or less). "I don't see what I should be thanked for… other than being clumsy." He makes a face. "Got you into trouble, got /me/ into trouble…"

"Don't be silly." This is actually said quite softly yet with a great deal of strength. Beneath all the layers of anger and coldness a smile surfaces. "You actually were responsible for giving me a chance at life. You saved me when no one else knew that I needed it." Faith pauses when she registers the actual words that he speaks. "I got you into trouble?" Yes, she's concerned. A gentle gesture, a gentle touch, is offered as she reaches out for his arm. "I didn't mean for that to happened, you should know. I've never intended for anything like that to happen."

Hiro reaches up to brush her cheek with a fingertip. "It was my fault, not yours. My… weakness. And my irritation with Isonzo. About the only good part about that was that it got you loose from him." He takes her arm, starting to walk with her again. "I am somewhat old fashioned in some respects."

It's almost as if they're having a moment, just now. Unlike the mentally unstable woman he rescued, this actually dawns on Faith. She doesn't react poorly but she's much warmer than she used to be. Figuratively speaking, of course. "Everyone has weaknesses. I don't blame you for that. I never could. I'm surprised that it hasn't happened to me more often, and truth be told I'd rather it be by someone I trust." That list is growing shorter by the day.
When they begin walking once more she actually tries to return the favor at the arm, to make it look more like a young couple and less like someone who is being led around. "Michael. I've only seen him once in the past few weeks, and it was after what happened. He told me that I'm not claimed anymore, which explained why no one knew that I was being held hostage." The poor woman still doesn't understand that he just didn't know in general.

Hiro nods. "I knew you were being held hostage, but I'm glad you were found; the leads I had either petered out or — in one case — went up in flames." He gets a pained look. "That was infuriating, and embarrassing." Something about the no-longer-claimed status starts prodding him mentally, but he dismisses it for the moment. "Have things become any better with your sibling?" He hates to bring it up, but it does need to be asked.

Went up in flames. That part actually stands out in what he says. "Hiro, were you behind that fire?" Yes, she can actually watch the news now and retain what she knows. As they walk she leans her head against his arm only adding to the image that she's purposely portraying to those who may be watching. He may not be comfortable with it but she's hoping it will keep her safe at least until she can get back home.
"Supposedly Hope wanted to kill me when she thought I was a vampire." It's a bold statement but Faith can only tell the truth. He did ask, after all. "She's entirely stressed about my situation which is why she doesn't know most of it. At least now that I'm not broken she can stop worrying some. You know, she can be normal and I can be free to do as I please." Sort of.

He makes a disgusted sound. "In part. I tried to break in and botched the job, and someone inside set off some kind of incendiary device — whether intentionally or by accident, I don't know. I was too busy being shot at and hitting their pet vampire with a tree." He shakes his head. "Family is important, even when you don't agree with them." Gently, Hiro takes her hand, for a change, his fingers cool against hers.

Despite the winter weather her hand is actually quite warm. "Well, that's not what I would consider your fault." Again she replays everything that he says and it causes her to blink. "Are you alright? Did they hurt you?" Yes, that's actual concern in Faith's voice, not just the words she knows that she should say. "I'll never stop loving my sister, no matter what. Even if I turn into something she doesn't like." She's meaning her personality, but the other meaning applies just as well. Rose looks up at him them, nervous yet hopeful. "Hiro, I was actually wondering if you could do me a favor."

Hiro laughs softly. "Just bruises to my body and ego, nothing more. I was more angry over the destruction of possible evidence." He smiles down at her fondly — at her thoughtfulness. Nodding at her words about her sister, he shrugs. "Perhaps she will come to understand, given time." The request, though, makes him pause. "A favor? You may ask… but there are certain things I cannot do, so bear that in mind."

She furrows her brow at the thought of any bruises to him. She catches herself looking over his form, even if he is fully closed. As much as she knows about vampires tells her that he's okay but still she's concerned. "Well, I told Michael that I know where they were keeping me. At least, I could retrace my steps." The continued mention of her sister causes her to look away from him, and Faith bites down on her lower lip when she's ready to ask her request. "I'm tired of being weak; I want to learn to defend myself. I didn't know if you could help with that. I'd pay whatever price you asked."

Hmph. "If they've half a brain, they've cleared out by now. Still, it would be a good place to try and pick up the trail again." Hiro cracks his knuckles, before looking carefully at Rose. "I can… and we can discuss price and payment at a later date. I won't put you in an uncomfortable position." His lips quirk up faintly. "There are some things I can teach, though."

At this point she nods. "That's why I thought someone would want to act sooner as opposed to later, but I guess I was wrong. For all I know they either sealed everything off or burnt it all, but I'm just happy to know that I can remember enough to retrace my steps." How long that will last she has no idea. Finally she looks back at him, her heart beating a little faster but no real fear in her eyes. "I'm prepared, you know. For cost." If she weren't, Faith wouldn't be so comfortable at his side. "I just know that there are some out there that I will need to defend myself against eventually. I'll take anything you can give."

Hiro shakes his head. "We can worry about cost another time." He reaches out to touch her chin, looking back into her eyes. "But I will teach you. You're more than willing to do what it takes to survive, I think." He smiles once more, and places an arm around her, a kindly gesture. "And your captors will be dealt with, I assure you."

The trust that she has with him is evident by the fact that she doesn't pull away from his touch. It would be easy to understand such a reaction given everything that's happened to her. "You've seen everything that's happened to me. Nearly getting blown up the other day was the last straw. I'm not going to go down without a fight, not anymore." That and Isobel scares the living daylights out of her but that isn't going to be said. "I just want to see them go down before anyone else is hurt. The Sheriff risked his life for me. Whatever these people are up to, it involves vampires against other vampires and it makes no sense to me."

Hiro is very quiet, before he speaks. "I ran into one of these vampires as well. It's why I bollixed the job at that gas station — these aren't just new spawn with second thoughts. That one I killed was old and nasty." His lips curl slightly in a hard expression. "Thankfully, he didn't realize that if he held onto me, I could drag him around." He looks down at Rose. "I do have to wonder why you trust me, Rose. All things considered."

What he admits to actually scares her, and that fear is evident. She had no way of knowing exactly what's going on but at least it's been confirmed that she's on the right track. "I don't understand it," Faith finally admits. "Why would they do such a thing? Unless there's some sort of ancient vampire war that I'm not aware of. There can be only one, or something." His comment about trust brings pause to her ramblings and causes her to look away from him. "I have to think of it logically," she explains after taking a breath. "You didn't know me and let's face it: it doesn't get any easier than me. Still you went out of your way to help me. I can't picture you as evil or anything when I know what you've done for me."

Hiro raises an eyebrow. "If there is some kind of vampire war, they didn't send us our invitations." He smiles at that — yup, he's joking. "I … do not think I am evil. I prefer to be a force for /order/, though. The world can be a horribly twisted place without laws to focus society." His hand on hers again. "But I am happy to be your friend, Rose."

He is joking and it catches her by surprise. The vampires that she's been around recently don't seem to have the exact same sense of humor. "I don't want an invitation. I want to get out of in the middle of it." Rose might know that he's joking but it just has to be said. She never went looking for the involvement that she has. He's so sweet, though, which causes her to look back at him . "Thanks." Wow, does she feel like a child all over again or what. "Again, for everything."

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