It's A Horse, Of Course

Northwest Dallas

Primarily a stretch of industrial and commercial properties, Northwest Dallas is filled with a few smaller manufacturing businesses surrounded by commercial outlets. This area is not without it's own charm, however. The city's second largest airport can be found here, as well as Koreatown, and the stunningly beautiful Brook Hollow Country Club which is a clean, green forested area nestled near Bachman Lake.

Evening has moved on to a later hour. Night is in full effect in all it's hot summer glory. Along the streets of Northwest Dallas comes a distinct rhythmic *clop* *clop* of a horse's hooves against the pavement.

The walk from the lake to this area has actually taken quite a while. It has also spurred many conversations of "Why aren't you riding?" and answers of "The horse is not mine."

Nearing the Medieval Times building, Bethany stops for just a moment. "Now, Abaddon. I have no idea whether we are meant to go in the front doors, or whether there is a side door for your entry." The Hessich warmblut just snorts and flicks its ears.

"Shhh now, do not be like that. Your master was not very clear which entry we were to use."

Okay. A large dark bay horse might attract a certain amount of attention, moving down the street, even with the slender woman leading it. Or, perhaps especially because of that. Until, of course, it gets so close to Medieval Times. Then, it looks more like a publicity stunt.

Rachel, certainly, can't help but glance at it as she crosses the street half a block up. She has to walk that way, anyway, to get back to her car. She carries a black bag over her shoulder, today, a small rucksack, really. Nothing special about it; it's simply convenient.

In any case, her steps slow as she passes by the horse. A slightly bemused expression touches her lips. "You might try around by the performer's door," she offers the woman. "Probably safer than trying to take a big fellow like that through the patron entry.

Her blunted northern tones make it pretty clear she's not from 'round here, as the locals might say. But, she's probably not wrong with her suggestion.

And, she's supposed to think about public safety.

From seemingly nowhere comes the voice. Lost in the conversation with the horse, Bethany was truly not expecting to hear a reply. That she receives one causes several blinks before she realizes that it's coming from the woman close by.

"Thank you," she replies, voice calm to match her demeanor. "I honestly did not think we were to go into the entrance, but as he is not mine and all the direction I received was to bring him here…" She is able to think for herself, truly, but not knowing the building does make things a little more painful.

"Sorry if we got in your way. We are honestly just looking for a safer location to cross so as not to distract the traffic flow."

"Probably a good idea," Rachel concedes, giving an easy smile. She looks up at the charger. "He's pretty big. But, he's dark. Wouldn't want anyone to hit him." A beat. She chuckles. "It'll kill their insurance." She's not convinced, though, given the animal's size, that the horse wouldn't be able to walk away. Deers have, when clipped by cars. And they're smaller.

"In any case, you're not in my way. How'd you end up with him? He yours?"

"He is very big, but he seems gentle enough." Bethany is holding calm though the entire walk she has been a tad concerned over being trampled.

"He threw his rider in the park." Hardly an explanation. "He seemed to take to me. I offered to walk him back to his stable for the evening as the man appeared to have other business to tend to." Though it was more an order to catch the horse that had her grabbing the reins in the first place.

"I am fairly certain that if he were hit I would be assumed to be at fault and I cannot say I fancy that idea."

"I wouldn't," Rachel concedes. Fancy the idea, that is.

She shoves her hands lightly into her pockets, adjusting her stance to give the horse a little more space as its head tosses and it snorts briefly. Apparently, he doesn't fancy the idea, either. Go figure.

"Who was his rider? Friend of yours?" Why take the horse otherwise, right?

Fear for the horse is always a good reason to take it from the master. For Bethany it was just to show the big beastie a bit of compassion. With the snort and head toss, she offers a gentle, "Shh now, calm yourself you devil." Loosening her grip on the reins a little with her right hand, she reaches up with the left to scratch Abaddon's ears and calm him again.

"I really don't know," she says with a small laugh. "I never thought to ask his name. Though as to whether he is a friend or not remains to be seen." He may once have been a friend, in a life that is many years past. "Mostly he and the beastie here needed a break from one another, and I really don't mind taking the time out to do something for someone else." Such is her nature.

"That's nice of you," Rachel gives the other woman a smile. "You're obviously good with animals," she says as the beast calms under the other woman's touch.

She does find it a trifle odd, though, that the rider just handed him off to a stranger like that. The animal's got to be worth thousands of dollars. "The guy's lucky you're so honest…" she says slowly, regarding the woman, automatically evaluating. "To just give you his horse and ask you to walk it home?" Seems kinda crazy to her.

"What would I do with a horse other than walk it home?" Bethany keeps scratching the horse's ears, getting a little nicker from him. "I certainly have no room for a beast like this at my place." Definitely not a lot of evil thought within the woman.

"To be honest I'm not really fond of animals generally. I suppose I worked with horses in another life." Her hand finally drops from the ears of the horse. This causes her to get nudged by a large nose.

"That is enough Abaddon. I doubt your master would like if I spoiled you overly much." With a smile to the woman she can't help but add, "I have no doubt that he is either nearby keeping an eye on his creature, or he has decided that the poor thing is too much of a curse and perhaps has little care for if it makes it back safely."

Rachel's only real response to that assessment is a bit of a wry smile and a slight nod that accompanies an internal 'huhn'. Still strikes her as odd — even if the woman's right about the pointlessness of taking the animal elsewhere. The thought that the man might be lurking around, however. The shrink arches a brow some, internally speculating as to what sort of fellow would lurk while a stranger walked his horse back to its stable. A knight that's been hit over the head with a lance one too many times? Unlikely.

Immediately, Rachel looks up, scanning rooftops and higher architecture. Odd move, maybe, but so few people ever look up… it's one of the first places she always looks for the unexpected.

Not that there's anything to be seen.

"Well, he got lucky with you, then," is her decision on that.

Bethany pages: Do you mind if I make an 'assessment' in my pose? I don't want it to come off as twinkish, but I think perhaps seeing the same behavior in police patients might make her say something.

You paged Bethany with 'No, that's fine. Rae's constantly assessing and making conclusions about people. It makes sense others would do the same.'

"The easier explanation," Bethany offers with a chuckle, "Is that he grew tired of the conversation and merely wanted an excuse to be elsewhere." Entirely possible as she does tend to get a bit kooky in regards to certain things from time to time.

Careful not to mention the man as being an "old one", she watches as the woman eyes the rooftops. "You are either extremely paranoid of something falling from above, or you have the critical eye of law enforcement. I've seen quite a few in my office and they tend to look upward before looking anywhere else."

The assement that the man got lucky with running into her causes a shrug. "That remains to be seen as well, though I think as long as I get this horse back to his lodgings he'll be happy enough." There is a line drawn there. The horse will be returned to the location but she will not care for it beyond that.

A wry expression touches Rachel's face, and her head cants to one side. "Yeah," she says simply. "I'm in law enforcement… And what is it you do?" A beat. "Are you a psychologist?" It would explain the assessment, even the cops coming into her office — unless she's in some sort of other business that draws cop attention. But, were that the case, why advertise it, right?

"Among other things, yes. We offer different things at the practice." Were Bethany a criminal she's definitely not giving off that vibe. Just continuously maintaining the calm demeanor to keep the horse calm. As though realizing she's thought of him, there is another nudge with the nose and a snort by her ear.

"I would offer a business card normally. I wasn't planning on being much anywhere but the park though," she comments. Which should be obvious thanks to the relaxed look of the sandals, broom skirt, and tee. "It's the practice over in Oak Cliff."

It really isn't via the rooftops that Marius travels; that'd be Spiderman, and in some cases, Batman. The older vampire actually prefers the more traditional modes of travel— walking, and he's gotten the hang of using, of all things, taxis.

One of the city's liveries pulls up by a corner, and after the exchange of payment, the passenger door is opened, and closed again once Marius extricates himself from the vehicle. It hasn't been too long, but long enough for the vampire to have taken care of .. a few of the necessities of life, or rather, unlife.

Of course the figure of the dark horse can be seen in silhouette, as well as the lamb that leads it.. and another? His pace is unhurried, though his gaze is fixed and locked upon the vision before him.. and as he approaches, he catches the nudge of the beast's nose by Bethany's ear.

"That damnable beast is not yet inside? Is there no one to take him in?"

The practice over in Oak Cliff.

That doesn't tell Rachel as much as it should. "You know," she says, smiling now, "I don't think we've been formally introduced." She extends her hand. "I'm Dr. Rachel McKendrick. I'm a psychologist, too…" She glances over her shoulder, however, as the taxi pulls up to the curb. The tall man that emerges from it catches her attention. As always, she notes movement and body language. She notes his face, mainly because she's in the habit of making note of such things. His pallor and economy of movement tell her something about him. But, as he passes under a street light, it's his eyes that disturb her.

Her hand falls away and her back straightens some as he approaches, calling out to her companion. She glances briefly between them… and even to the horse, before she puts a professionally courteous expression on her face and allows the other woman to respond.

The extended hand is taken. While the hold is gentle, the shake is firm. "Dr. Bethany Brooks," she offers with a smile. "Pleasure to meet you."

The sound of the taxi doesn't seem to phase her. It's common enough occurrence in Dallas. With her hand free, she reaches up to pat the horse's snout.

"There was some debate as to which entrance to use," Bethany replies as the vampire approaches yet again with the words "damnable beast". "I thought we had agreed that you should call him by his given name; Abaddon. It will put him more at ease."

Marius' gaze sweeps quickly over the pair before he reaches to take hold of the reins. This causes the horse to take a couple of dancing steps around as the animal goes from relaxed to somewhat stressed. It could be due to the grab, or perhaps the natural instinct of animals to want to get away from such a being? "There should have been someone to take him," is offered in an even tone, though it seems there could be heard a touch of annoyance. "Apparently, there was not."

He looks to the lambs, the two women, and back to the horse. The words come clipped, accented. "Fine. Abaddon. I will bring him, then, and make sure he is taken care of."

Rachel files Bethany's name away for later. If nothing else, she can find the practice she's talking about. Just as a professional courtesy.

She steps back, adjusting her bag on her shoulder, letting the man get in closer to the now-skittish horse. She doesn't say anything now. Instead, she continues to just stand back and observe, that professional neutrality still in place.

If the man is what she suspects he is, and if he owns a horse that's stabled here — that's a useful bit of information.

Note to self: Make a scan of local business records when I get back to the office.

"You are frightening him again," Bethany scolds quietly. "You should show him a gentler hand and he will go willingly." It is the same argument as before but there is something in her that is absolutely positive of this fact. There is no argument when the owner of the beastie wants to take the reins. The are relinquished with nary a word.

"I did not see anyone outside of the Medieval Times building, and as your beastie is too large to go in through the front doors we took pause to rethink where he was supposed to go."

Bethany has not forgotten Rachel. She turns to the woman with a smile, "Thank you, Dr. McKendrick. I do appreciate the help."

"Aid? Was aid necessary." Marius' gaze moves towards the now identified 'Dr. McKendrick', and after a heartbeat, seems.. dismissed from his mind. If body language is any hint insofaras he simply turns his attention back onto the large, dark horse.

"I am not frightening him.. and even if I am, he is right to be so," Tugging on the reins, Marius takes a step forward, "It is time to move," There.. talking to it— after a fashion.

Finally, however, the vampire obviously decides that perhaps the creature is moving too slowly. "Ha!" is barked at the animal, which causes it to surge forward, this time in the direction Marius wishes to move.

"Through the side door."

The blonde vampire will be leading the creature off again, to put him away for the rest of the evening.

Rachel doesn't really think she did anything to help at all. But, again, she still says nothing.

She arches a brow faintly as the man takes the horse and his leave all at once, with hardly a second glance at either of them. Vampires. Just as well, really.

She watches him go, and finds herself quickly standing alone with Bethany. There's a moment as she watches until he's entered into the building proper. Then, she gives herself a bit of a shake and glances at her watch.

"You know, it's late, and I really shouldn't linger. Have you got a car nearby, or do you want flag down that taxi before it gets too far away?"

For her part, she knows her car is close. And she should really get back to it.

"Not necessary, but helpful all the same." Bethany and Abaddon would have figured out the entrance sooner or later. "You are frightening him," she points out. Yet it seems that the old one is able to speak nicely to the beastie. After a fashion.

She too watches until both vampire and horse disappear. Curiously. Analyzing the beastie's reaction to the master.

"I have never been one to worry about being out after dark. I don't mind walking." There is no fear or tremble in her voice. "Please, don't worry after me. I'll be fine." She seems so sure of this that it can't be anything but.

Even before the Great Revelation, Rachel was careful after dark. Hazard of the job. She thumbs over her shoulder toward a public lot. "My car's nearby. I can give you a lift, if you want." A beat. "Call it professional courtesy?" She gives an easy smile. Frankly, she's not really convinced the woman's in danger. But, she makes the offer nonetheless.

Bethany has half turned to walk away when the offer comes. Her body stops in the turn creating an odd image before she turns back to face the other woman. "Do you have air-conditioning?" Should the answer be a yes it does look as though the strange calm woman fully means to take the other psychologist up on her offer.

At that, Rachel actually laughs. "Yeah. I've got air conditioning. C'mon, it's not far." She swings her head slightly to indicate direction, and then turns to lead the way. There. There's her Good Samaritan deed for the day. Both women get to where they need to be and Rachel doesn't have to worry about someone else falling prey… well, anything, really. It's all good.

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