The Challenge

Bloody Mary's Bar

The Bloody Mary. Why, of all places, would she want to meet /here/? Hiro's face is politely blank, but he can't help but view the decor as somewhere between cliched and unintentionally funny. It's so… overdone. Sipping from a bottle of synthetic, he leans against the bar, patiently waiting. Absently, he flicks his eyes up to the red star lights, and firmly restrains a smile.

Ah, but that is precisely the point. An adorable pun, the ability to make fun of one's own kind. Truthfully, there are reasons other than these that Isobel has chosen this location. It may have the best synthetic in the city, but she can't even really enjoy that. Instead, she breezes in on the arm of some yuppie businessman, licking her lips as she releases his arm and moves her way toward the bar.

"Mr. Nishimura." A nod given to the man as she stands a bit off from the bar.

Hiro inclines his head. "Ms. Symon." He pushes off from the bar, approaching her with his usual quiet pace. "Why don't we find a booth? No point in talking at the bar." He offers her his arm — see, he's a gentleman — before moving away.

The arm is taken with a gentle grace. Appearances must be kept, and she was raised properly once upon a time. "There is a booth that is generally left empty for Mr. Grant. As I carry another message, we shall take his booth." Though it looks as though Hiro is guiding the way, Isobel is gently nudging toward that particular booth. In the center of everything, where she may keep an eye on things.

Easily managed. Hiro lets Isobel sit down, before sliding in across from her, calmly steepling his fingers as he regards her with that same politely blank expression. Evidently he's waiting for her to get down to business before saying anything more important than generic pleasantries about the nighttime weather.

"First, allow me to ask you something." Isobel moves only in so far as to slide her right leg over her left and lean in a smidgeon to allow for a slightly more clandestine conversation. "Do you still have dealings with the Tyler girl?"

Well, that was to the point. "…Yes. The girl has sought me out for lessons in self-defense." Hiro studies Isobel with that same clinical expression, as he continues quietly. "She fears the VVEM, and with good reason I'd say." His lips quirk upwards, faintly. "Not that I can blame her."

Isobel enjoys being to the point, even when it means her Maker gets upset with her. Here, she does not have that worry. "So you offer the lessons, which she will use against our own kind, in return for what? What was her promise to you?"

Hiro lifts an eyebrow. "Who said the lessons were against our kind? Or do you intimate that the problem within the VVEM goes deeper than a few disaffected, brain-damaged vampires?" He shrugs at the mention of payment. "As her predicament was exacerbated in part by myself, I see this as restitution."

"Ones who have lived long enough and wish to see the sun should be allowed to do so without being staked," Isobel states calmly. "It does not mean that they are brain damaged, merely that they have wearied of life." Though his response to her question merely gets a small nod. "As to any intimations I may make in regards to the VVEMT, they are only suppositions on my part. I know very little of the group, and I care very little about what happens to them, barring what the Sheriff asks of me."

Hiro narrows his eyes. "Ms. Symon, let's not be disingenious here. It doesn't take a support group to go see the sun. And even if it did, I doubt such support groups would need automatic weapons and incendiary 'scorched-earth' measures." He taps his fingertips together idly. "So, is this little meeting regarding Miss Tyler?"

"As I stated, Mr. Nishimura, merely speculation on my part. Some of our kind do like to do things in an extremely flashy manner, and implicate others in their decision to remove themselves of the earth." A grin, slow and subtle, appears upon her lips. "It is indeed in regards to Miss Tyler. Though I do believe there is another party with a vested interest in this particular conversation so I will continue to keep my hand close until they arrive."

Michael for his part enters Bloody Mary's with a quick look around, he glances at the fangbangers with subtle, if not masked distaste, although it's the subtle vague and almost non-existant look of a vampire that's lived a long time. He spots Hiro and Isobel and begins to make his way over to them, he moves casually nodding his head to each of them as he gets to the table. "Good evening, it finds you both well I hope?"

Hiro's blank expression doesn't change, as he merely makes room for Michael at the booth. "Tolerable. I believe my current complaint centers on the weather. As in, I thought Texas was supposed to be warm." He lifts an eyebrow fractionally at Isobel, but says nothing, expecting her to explain in due time.

"Mr. Isonzo, how wonderful that you were able to make it this evening." Isobel moves only enough so that she can be seated mid-booth, allowing the men to take up the outer seats as they wish. "First, allow me to reiterate something that the Sheriff has already been putting out there. With regards to the group labeling themselves the Voluntary Vampire Extinction Movement, there is to be /NO/ retribution of any kind." This said for the benefit of all the vampires in the establishment, not at all for the two who are seated with her.

"Second of all, in the coming week or so, if you have any information kindly bring it to my attention. The Sheriff will be incredibly busy, and has put me in charge of many of his dealings."

Sliding into the Booth Michael nods very slightly. "Of course." He looks at Isobel, his expression still unreadable. "Are we expected to actively seek this information, or is it just a request to bring what we may hear in passing to attention?"

Hiro slips a hand into his jacket, coming out with an envelope which clearly has something inside it. "I found this when my last lead… well, went up in smoke." His lips curl downward slightly in an irritated expression. "I'm afraid it means little to me, but perhaps you or the Sheriff might have more understanding of it."

The envelope is taken quietly, tucked beside her for perusal later. Isobel shifts her eyes between the two men, and moistens her lips - more to taunt the fangbangers eyeing the table than anything else. "I would prefer that it be anything you hear in passing. Should you be implicated in something that would mean punishment… well I may not be as lenient as Mr. Grant has been in the past." Better to be upfront about such things, as she has been given veritable free reign in his absence.

"Now for the fun part of the discussion. The Sheriff has deemed that the Tyler girl is now of sound mind…"

Nodding Michael smiles very slightly. "I have no interest in engaging some cult, but of course if I hear anything I would tell you." He frowns slightly at the mention of Rose. "I've spoke with her, it was quite an impressive recovery."

Hiro is silent, ignoring any outside attention; focusing in on Isobel instead. His brow furrows slightly as well, at Isobel's declaration of Rose being of sound mind. Impassively, though, he waits for Isobel to continue.

"As such, she may once more be claimed. However!" Isobel smirks at Hiro, then Michael in turn. "There are a few caveats. She must enter into such a contract of her own free will; she may not be glamoured into accepting it. In order for either of you to lay proper claim on her, the claimant must present Miss Tyler to either myself or Mr. Grant, here at the ridiculous Valentine's Day event. Should she choose one of you, then that will be that. Should she choose neither of you, the request is that you no longer have any communications or dealings with her."

Nodding Michael smiles. "I see." He seems to find the matter very slightly amusing. "Well I have no intention of making a claim of her. I only did so originally because it seemed prudent to prevent her from being fed upon again."

Hiro shrugs lightly. "Then I suppose I will see you in a few days, Ms. Symon." His dark eyes hold a faintly amused glint — perhaps at the theatrical nature of Isobel's conditions. "Is there any other business to discuss?"

"Then that would leave you, Mr. Nishimura," comes immediately after Michael graciously bows out of the running. "Unless, of course, she chooses another of our kind to be her protector." A slow, wry smirk, then a wink offered at Hiro. Every other vampire in the bar has just heard that 'Miss Tyler' is available for the taking. Isobel nods at Hiro. "Perhaps you will at that, Mr. Nishimura, though remember it must be of her own free will." A near imperceptible shake of her head is given, her hands folding neatly on her lap. "That is all the business I have to discuss."

Nodding Michael seems to consider that for a moment. "Then if you will excuse me, I have fed and I find little other reason to spend my time with desperate and generally sad humans." He keeps his voice low so that none of those humans can hear.

Hiro nods. "I must withdraw as well." He smiles in a mirthless way. "Until again," he replies to Michael and to Isobel, smoothly rising to his feet. "I hope the Sheriff's time away is restful for him."

Knowing what she knows, Isobel sincerely doubts that her Maker's time away will be pleasant at all. She allows none of this to show through the smile she offers to both men. "Dismissed," she says mirthfully, waving her hands toward the door.

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