Oh. My. Gosh.

Southern Methodist University Campus

Green grass carpets the campus area, the central focus of which is a large concrete fountain. Tall sprays of water spout straight up from the center, with smaller sprays blossoming out closer to the edge. Seven low buildings in a variety of architectural styles are arrayed around the fountain.
To the right is the old Science building. Continuing in a counter-clockwise manner, there is the Humanities Building, then the library, a track, two tennis courts, a gymnasium and finally the dormitories.

It's dark.

It's dark, and it's not exactly Hope's favorite time of day. Especially in light (harhar) of certain things. Like the fact that her dead best friend who's in love with her sister has suddenly appeared and is not dead. Like the fact that she totaled her car and now has to rely on public transportation. Like the fact that she's got no Bobbyguard to keep her safe.

It's dark. There are only a few lights that keep the parking lot from being a sea of black. Gentle beacons along the pathways, guiding her. It's still dark, and though she clings to each little glow as she passes it, the newly blonde girl feels as though she's in a horror movie, and is jumping at every single little sound. Each rustle of the leaves in the trees. Each noise in the bushes at her feet. Even the sound of vehicles passing by is enough to make her hop and leap with a small squeak every so often - which is not doing any wonders for her injured foot.

Strolling in the opposite direction comes a young man, easy steps carrying him along the sidewalk with a light gait. He's wearing a pale blue shirt under a dark, woolen jacket, open and flowing with his walk. The headphones in his ears are piping, well, nothing, but she's not to know that. There's even a bag slung over one shoulder to finish the picture of a young, cheerful RA, maybe an older student. Not a care in the world. He's even wearing enough fake tan to appear alive.

Still, he saunters along, eyes that were dead ahead flicking sideways a little as he apparently spots the incoming girl for the first time. Not that he's been stalking the shadows for a little while first to make sure she's the right one. Honest. He stops, looking at her as though recognising her for some reason.

The sudden noise causes another squeak and jump. Hope's seen enough horror movies (and lived through enough of these incidents now) to know that when you hear a noise, you should run. Run the opposite direction. Don't run upstairs. Don't run downstairs. In fact, avoid stairs at all costs. Her somewhat addled-brain causes her to glance left, then right, then straight ahead.

Straight ahead there is a student. One who looks like Mr. Hartigan. "Ellio—" No, Elliott is going to seminary school. He's going to become a priest. He wouldn't be out in the SMU parking lot this late at night.

"Oh. My. Gosh." The young man looks on with something like reverence, walking again to get himself within genuine talking distance. "Are you… are you Hope Tyler?" A perfect local accent, threaded now with amazement and cheerful friendliness. "I saw your interview, y'know, in the newspaper? Wow." Starstruck, totally.

Not Elliott, therefore, unsafe. Hope fumbles in her backpack for her cellular phone, and starts to idly fiddle with her silver cross necklace as she does so. Only a few know that she's now blonde, and so the use of her name puts her on edge. "Oh, umm… thanks." No confirmation from her though, as to her being Hope Tyler — not that the blonde hair actually hides who she is at all.

"Sorry," says the man, with a sheepish smile, "I sort of, well, met this girl who knows this guy who knows you or something? I'm William. William Grant. Never met anyone famous before." He brings forth a smile, all white teeth and open friendliness. He's moving, gesturing like a human. A well-practised facade.

"Famous?" Hope shakes her head, the brand new cellular phone goes flying out of her backpack and onto the ground between them. Well, /that/ is out now. Fingers fumble for her prototype next, while she still plays with the chain. Strange guy in the parking lot, at night. Really she should be running off, but she needs to get to a friend's borrowed car so she can get off campus and get home.

The man watches the cellphone fly, and his eyes widen as he seemingly realises something. "Oh, darn, sorry. I guess it's night and I'm being kind of weird. I was thinking about attending the leadership conference, you know? When I see someone who I know is affiliated with the Church, I guess I get a little excited. You want me to get that for you?" He gestures in the vague direction of the phone.

"No!" Hope gets out her prototype, a small lipstick looking thing, and clutches it in the palm of her hand. The other just keeps toying with the silver cross nervously. "I mean, it's uhm… fine, but you s-should talk to the Newlins." She may be their poster girl, but she's not going to be in charge of any monetary things. "I'm… just a bit jumpy…" Vampire attacks and all that — ones against her sister more than anything, and since she /looks/ like her twin, only without the dark hair, she's more on edge than normal.

"Man, Reverend Steve? Seriously, what a guy," says William, reverently, before studying Hope with a little more interest, concern even touching at his brow. "Say, are you okay? I don't think there's any of 'em around campus, y'know. Not with security and everything."

There is only a slight facial twitch as she's asked /yet again/ if she's okay. "I'm fine!" It's snappish, though afterward she shows a bit of chagrin. "Bad week," she offers by way of explanation. "They can be anywhere at night. /Anywhere/. Especially places that you feel safe." Like the gorram bowling alley. "Campus security is a laugh anyhow. They don't have weapons, they don't even have mace or a taser to subdue a /regular/ attacker."

The young man studies her again, apparently a little taken aback by the snapping girl. "You think?" he wonders, apparently able to ignore it, eyes widening again with something like surprise. "I thought they pretty much stayed in their haunts, bars and all that. I mean, you can normally spot them, right?" He does allow a faintly wry nod. "'Strue, I guess. Security ain't all that. Maybe I better see you to your car then?" Regular White Knight.

"No thank you. You can stay right there." Hope doesn't know this man from Adam. It's night. White Knight or not, she tends not to trust men at night. Even the nice ones. Especially if she doesn't know them. There has only been one she's trusted at night, and that was only due to the fact he was wearing the Honesty Ring. "Their haunts? Like coffee shops? Like bowling alleys? Like the one that preyed on people leaving a private party, or the one that raped my sister? Sure, they stick around their 'haunts'. If you keep believing that, you're likely going to be their next victim you know. CoDs don't discern humans from food."

The youth listens, his face dropping as he does so. Looks even a little morose. "Hey, just trying to be nice," he offers, quietly. "Oddly enough," he continues, starting to walk past her, "I've heard all sorts of rumours about the vampires, not just about the bad few." His accent drops, falling towards a faintly Southern drawl. An arm flicks out, impossibly fast, aiming to draw a rapid, gentle line down Hope's cheek with his fingertips. Still, the vampire is preternaturally prepared to dodge the inevitable assault. His voice starts to drip with teasing politeness. "Feeding only from those who offer themselves, hurting none and upholding the law better than any graceless, misguided fanatic who has twisted the word of Our Lord to hatred and despair." Even now, the body language becomes more flowing, graceful, heading towards inhuman as he drifts past.

"Yes, well the vampire who kidnapped and raped my sister was just trying to be nice /too/." Then he's starting past her. Hope keeps her eyes trained on the man, watching as he moves, trying to stay out of his way. Then his arm is out, fingers touching her cheek. Instantly, the little lipstick styled case is held out in front of her and sprayed. Mace, laced with very fine liquid silver. Her prototype invention. Not enough to actually harm a vampire, but enough to hopefully startle them enough so that she can get away. It doesn't matter if he's twisting the Fellowship's words. It doesn't matter that he may already be on his way. The fine mist is shot toward his face and then she's trying to bolt and run, even with a few broken toes.

Expecting a projectile, Will is caught with a little as he dodges sideways with inhuman speed. The hissing noise that stems from the side of his face is coupled with a faint smell, as he breaks into a smile, a swift movement tearing his shirt from his body and wiping at the liquid before it can do too much harm. "No need to run," he says, his voice lifting to carry in the space between. "I will never harm you unless you start attempting to murder my kind. The monstrosity that harmed your sister has already been brought to justice."

Hope is already off and running, however. She carries absolutely no trust for vampire-kind. One killed her best friend, a boy she loved, and then turned him. One severely screwed with her sister's mental state, kidnapped, and raped her. To top all of that off? She's just honestly hit her breaking point. Her mind cannot handle much more at all. So through the dark, dark parking lot she runs. Happy that her prototype worked. Cellular phone completely forgotten where it was. The need to get inside, and get somewhere safe absolutely paramount in her mind.

Slowly, William Grant bends down to pick up the abandoned cellphone. With a quiet 'hmph', he decides that some fun is in order. He moves, a black blur that skims past Hope, a brief and slight tug on the backpack the only suggestion that he has done anything. In fact, the phone has been placed within. He pauses a short distance in front of her, the darkness covering his movement enough that he may simply appear to come from mid air. "I simply wanted to discover your reasons. When you are ready to talk your beliefs through, we shall meet again." Then he is away again, a shadow against the night sky. A good night's work.

Creepy. That's what it is. Creepy. A black blur, a tug at her backpack? It gets a loud shriek. At that point, Hope decides to invest in one of those Fox40 whistles if she has to be alone on campus again. "T-that… it'll never happen! I won't talk to a child of Satan!" But she stands in the middle of the parking lot until she's sure the vile creature is gone. As soon as she gets to her borrowed car, she falls into the driver's seat. The doors are locked, the windows up, and there she stays, crying until she's calm enough to drive off to safety.

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