Hunter or Hunted?

Kidd Spring Park

The remnants of the dense forestry are located in here, as paths lead from the woods to the more entertaining features of the park. A jungle gym, complete with a small clubhouse and slides make up a play area designated for children, as do a few sandboxes. A community rec center can also be found in the park.
Separating the trees from the busier points of the park is small lake. During the summer months, a life guard can be found on duty so swimming is allowed, and there is also a small dock from which paddle boats and kayaks are available for rent.

With the sun setting, the night life of Dallas begins to wake. Those who wander the streets and park at night are something of a different kind of population than inhabit it by day, and not just in terms of vampires. There are teens who have slept the morning away to rise in the afternoon, little vampires in training, and revelers, and those who find the evenings, though hot and humid, preferable to the day. Of course, there is also the recreation department who takes advantage of the different population in an attempt to 'keep kids off the street', and to offer all of Dallas' population something different than simply going to bars.
As a result, there is a small swing jazz band that has taken a small area of Kidd Park, courtesy of the Recreation Department, and off to the side, a small group of people going through a set of movements in slow motion— the hallmark of Tai Chi. That group, too, are wearing shirts that signify they are part of the Dallas department.
The crowds aren't any bigger, sadly, but those they do have seem to be truly interested in some of the offerings.
It is off to the side, near the Tai Chi, that Marius stands, his hands in his pockets, watching the motions. The Orient has always been so very strange to him, even if he has "visited" it a couple of times. The mindset, the fact that they are willing to die so readily, is one that the veteran actually… approves of. A simple folk, when all is said and done and a pleasure to kill, if not for their skill but for their ferocity.

It's a known fact: Hope Tyler hates being out at night. She avoids it whenever possible.

The problem is, even with a yard, a young puppy needs to get some exercise, and when better to take her for a walk then when she has to go?

There is plenty of crowds out tonight at the Kidd Spring Park, and though she's nowhere near home? Crowds are safe. Less chance of a vampire attack in a full crowd of people, right? So she parks right at the rec center, then unloads the puppy with her pink collar and leash, which match the pink t-shirt and belt that Hope herself is wearing. "Okay, Serenity. I know there's a lot going on here, but I need you on your best behavior, alright? We'll walk around the rec center a few times then we'll go for a ride again."

The puppy woofs happily, wagging her tail with fervor. All a bundle of excitement.

This.. this, however, before him, is.. soft. A watering down of the art of war. Marius watches impassively as the group moves through slow-motion grabs, strikes.. and turns away, a scowl coming to his face.
Steps take Marius away from the site and onto the footpath that leads around the park. The strains of jazz rise into the air, and of all the complaints he may harbour regarding the current centuries, jazz is not on the list. It's something he actually— enjoys.
Beyond, and away.. the vision in pink is still some distance, though now in sight. Nothing more than a breather and an entity that requires little if any thought. A lamb.

Hope is the littlest lamb ever. She talks a big talk and all, but she's a meek, emotional little thing the majority of the time. Still, as she sets the beagle pup down on the ground and adjusts her collar, pinning a nice blue Fellowship pin to it, she smiles.

The smile, for the puppy, and the fact that the area is so populated right now doesn't even disappear as she begins down the path in Marius' direction. Walking along at a slow, relaxed speed, she praises the puppy for heeling nicely. "Good girl, Serenity! Heel." Even as she says it, she lets the leash extend a little further to see if the puppy will indeed continue to heel.

She does not, running until the end of the leash, then making a strangled noise as she's yanked back. "Silly thing. I said heel."

'Heel' seems to mean, in the little dog's mind, run out as far as she can and potentially annoy as many people who may not have time for a little beagle's cuteness-in-pink.
That would be Marius.
Stopping as the dog runs into the 'area', he pauses his step and looks down, then back at the owner of the leash as the dog is 'heeled' with some force behind it. "Are you training it?" Marius is familiar with the hunting dog; the nobles used it to find their game. "It is an animal that will rush ahead to find its prey so its Master can kill it. It is simply being.. what it is."

"Trying, I guess," Hope says, having no idea the man in her path is a big ol' scary vampire. Reaching down for Serenity, she ruffles her hand over the dogs ears and sighs. "She shouldn't be looking for prey, she's a family pet." Well, she's going to have to be a family pet. Since Hope wants a family and all. "That, and well, I'm not really a hunter." Which should be obvious. What sort of hunter runs around the city wearing pastels and has perfect manicures on both hands?

"Besides, she's too docile— " This is the point where Serenity growls at the man, her upper lip curling as she lets out a teensy little bark. "Serenity, stop that," Hope scolds. "She's generally very docile and friendly."

"Her kind was bred to hunt rabbits and aid in the hunt for foxes. I am certain she," Marius takes the cue, "is well aware of her instinct." He does nothing to either chastise or comfort the animal as it turns somewhat.. disturbed.
"It is simply what she is made to do." What she is.
The vampire allows for a hint of a smile to curl his lips up, though the expression may seem a bit out of place as the eyes reflect.. nothing. "You are no hunter, no. A girl with a hunting dog." Shaking his head, there is something amusing about the two.
"You do not wish a dog to be docile.. or friendly."

"Well sure I do. I don't want her running around biting people like vampires do, now do I?" Hope reaches down to try to calm the dog again. "Shh, Serenity. You be nice to the man now. He seems to like dogs."

Shaking her head, Hope sighs. "I really don't know what her problem is, sir. She's honestly a really nice little beagle." Even if she's a tad yappy sometimes. Tilting her head a little, she eyes him questioningly. "Are you a hunter then? Is that how you know so much about beagles?"

The quirk of a smile remains at the comment regarding vampires. "She has the teeth for it."
Marius doesn't look too terribly put out about the dog not settling with him around. In his life, there was never a call for a cur or a royal hunting dog. Too much work to keep alive and provides little to no nourishment in case of emergency. Better to have a young charge…
"I have hunted, yes.. but never with dogs." Then, that was for the high-born. Now? Well… every night. "Beagles, spaniels, poodles.. all are dogs for the hunt, and have always been used by the noble born." Here, he pauses before adding, "History is always alive. When one understands what one was, one can understand what one is." Marius is a man who knows both… quite well.
Looking around now, the veteran takes a step back. "Your dog undoubtedly wishes to move on. I should be on my way. Do not attempt to teach her to be something she is not. Rather, enjoy what it is she is."

"Be that as it may, she doesn't have a thirst for blood, which is all the better. I don't think I'd much like having a blood thirsty dog." Hope taps her Fellowship pin, which matches the one she snapped onto Serenity's collar not long ago.

"Oh, well that's good, I guess. Teaching them to be killers is just wrong." Utilizing their ability to find animals in bushes and point? That's one thing. Making them kill? That always squigged Hope right out. "You sound like a historian then. What a fun job to learn all about different eras. Maybe I'll take a history course next year. I think that would fill my humanities quota anyhow…" There's a moment where she's lost in a bit of thought, a smile coming to her face.

"Huh? Oh. Do you want to continue, Serenity?" She eyes the dog and shrugs. "I guess we should be going then. Sorry she bothered you, sir, and thanks for the advice!"

Never once has she clued in to what he is… and why should she have? It's not like he sparkles in the moonlight, or flashed fang at her.

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