Welcome to the 21st Century

Brooks Apartment

The upper two floors of the practice are actually the apartment of Bethany Brooks.

A large sitting room can be found upon coming up the stairs, one that is very open and decorated much like the lower floor. Colors and furniture all reminiscent of the Victorian era. Off the sitting room is a small balcony, fit only for one chair or person.

The kitchen is decidedly more modern, with newer appliances and cupboards. A small dinette set can be found just off the kitchen, and beyond that is a larger verandah which opens up to the yard in the back.

Up another set of small stairs two bedrooms can be found.

Well past midnight, though before the darkest hour, there are few that pass upon the street. All are asleep in their beds or well entrenched in their locations so as not to move until just before sunlight of the morning threatens. The street is silent.

Within the Psychological practice owned by Dr. Brooks, it too rests in darkness and quiet.. only there is one that stirs. There are no footfalls that can be heard on the wooden floor, however, even though it bears the weight of the Whip of the city. No creaks, no groans.. and as he puts a hand on the door that will, in his estimation, lead upstairs, there is something there that prevents him. Something familiar.. inviolable. A ward against his kind, after a fashion.

There comes a sharp rap upon the door, once, twice in rapid succession. Marius pauses and listens to the sounds of life upstairs.. and waits.


The hours past midnight are best left for sleep. Dr. Bethany Brooks can be found soundly in her bed, hand curled under her pillow. Her hair is splayed nicely over the white sheets. Her eyes flutter with the constancy of one in the midst of REM sleep.

The first rap at the door goes unheard. The second jostles her from her slumber.

A light can be seen under the door at the bottom of the stairs as she makes her way through the apartment. Creaks can be heard as she tiptoes down the stairs to see who it is. The practice, left purposefully unlocked. The apartment locked.

Cautiously, she asks through the wood, "Who is it?"



The single word should be suitable enough to identify him. He continues, however, his voice low, "Invite me in." Please. If you would. None of those endings clear his lips and are vocalized.

It's difficult to tell his mood from his tones and inflections as there are none. Added to that is the fact that even to see his face, there is little hint given as to his attitude at any given moment. At least he doesn't sound angry? Or happy. Or sad. Or…


Satisfied with the answer, Bethany opens the door.

Her hair is sleep mussed, her white nightgown similar to the one she's worn before. A blue ribbon this time, the material a smooth satin.

There is difficulty deciding if his words are threat, request, or order. Standing there perhaps a few moments longer than is necessary, she steps back from the door. "Please come in."

Since the entry is small she moves up a few steps, trusting him to take care of closing the door.


Marius stands at the threshold, waiting as she considers the request, seemingly weighing his words. He cannot pass without the invitation, and should she allow him in, it is that final bit of sanctuary that is removed, though his 'welcome' can be revoked at any time.

Please come in.

The utterance of those three words allow his foot to move forward, unhindered now by invisible ward, and taking those steps in, closes the door behind him. Turning to face front, he takes the stair as she moves up the few to make room.

"My kind may not enter private residences without permission. And, as permission is granted, so may it be revoked." It's almost a requirement to go over that. It is, however, something in her arsenal to keep her safe— from other vampires that may wish to do her harm because of who he is. "Do you understand?"


Bethany does not move more than a few steps up. While this puts her slightly taller than him momentarily, it is not done out of disrespect. More or less that she has nowhere else to go.

"Yes. The practice is public, but should an old one that is not you seek to harm me I can find my way to the apartment and be relatively safe." Unless they were to try to burn the home down. Then she would not, of course.

"Will you come upstairs, or do you wish to remain here?"


"Yes." The sound of his voice marks an approval. "There are none that I am aware of that would challenge me thusly, but should they, you have a manner of escape. You must move as quickly as possible." There really is no hope in out-speeding a vampire, but the warning is good.

As to the invitation, however, another step is taken upon the stair. Marius understands positional necessity, and looks towards the top landing, "I would rise to the top and sit. There is a matter which I would like to ask your aid." Is this Marius actually asking for help? He's..

To illustrate, the vampire reaches into his pocket and pulls out a small, palmsized object quickly and easily recognized as a cell phone. "It was purchased this evening for me."

Past midnight.. and he comes for a cell phone?!


"You needn't sit on the floor," Bethany replies as she makes her way up the stairs. She pauses at the landing, watching him. The cell phone is given an odd look. After a moment there comes a nod.

"Please, there are comfortable chairs in the sitting room. Couches. Surely better to rest upon than the hardwood."

At least for her.

"I can help you with that to the best of my ability, though I am no technical genius."


Clearing the stairs as well, the room indeed opens up into a sitting room. Marius heads for a couch and settles himself before handing the phone over to Beth. She's doing a great job at not laughing at him, or fighting a rising fit of pique, if she struggles with any of that at all.

Patience of a saint.

Upon the phone are two phone numbers. Both are 'Christian' names, first names only.. William and Isobel.. and no other. "I understand the concept, certainly," though the vampire could sound a little dubious under the obvious.. (perhaps) puffing. "And I have been instructed that one of these will allow for faster communication." And potentially fulfill the 'come into the 20th.. 21st Century, Marius!' request…

There is a brief attempt, "I find that pigeon is more useful."


Bethany pauses.

It is fleeting and momentary.

When she finally has the phone and decides to seat herself, it is upon the floor. She may have just told him that the couch would be more comfortable, but she chooses not to insult the old one by assuming comfort and familiarity.

"What is it that you wish to know?" Awaiting his response, she carefully enters her name and number as well. It may be presumptuous on her part but if he is that concerned for her safety he will not, in the end, mind having it.

"Pigeon is perhaps useful, but can very easily fall into the wrong hands or be killed. Notes can fall off or become wet."


That is exactly what Marius wants her to do, on both counts.. There is the comfortable familiarity of her at his knee; and to any outsider, it might look.. chauvenistic. Mysogenic. There is a great deal more there, however.. the easy acceptance of roles. While she has a place, he, too, has added responsibilities.

And her adding her name to the phone also makes things easier for him. Now, there is a way to contact his lamb should it be required.. and the other way around as he is not willing to share of his blood to make that mental contact.

"I would that you take what information you require to add to yours should you have need to contact me." He has no idea where to find his phone number… "What is it that will cause this device to ring? It has not, as of yet."

Marius allows a touch of a smirk to touch upon the edges of his lips. "One always guesses with pigeons. But, have I not heard one curse their god and wail that their 'call has been dropped'?"


Silently, Bethany gets up to obtain her phone. When one wears a nightgown one does not have their phone on them at all times. It is not far. Just to the side of the couch on a small table.

Quietly after finding his number, she enters it into her phone. Only after this is his phone handed back to him.

From hers, she dials the number to ensure it was entered correctly. To see if his ringer is at proper volume.

"One generally needs to call you," she explains, "for it to ring. You may go days without hearing it."


Marius takes the phone back, holding it awkwardly, obviously not yet used to the small device. When the phone does ring, it's an oddly 'happy' tune rather than a traditional *ringer* sound. More digging will need to be done later to determine if it is simply the default or someone had chosen it specifically.

It does, however, go off, and Marius looks to Bethany's phone, his.. and back once more. "I see—"

The vampire doesn't get a chance to finish what it is he's saying before the phone chirps happily again, though this time, it's a slightly different tone. Marius stares at the display blankly as it chirrups; it's not an incoming call, certainly. Not the same sound, though it could have been programmed to sound different with each individual caller.

Not the case, however. This.. is a 'new message'.

"This is a mistake." He'll be speaking to the Lady.. when she returns.


"What is a mistake?"

Bethany looks a bit perplexed. The tone of the ring is a mistake? The phone is a mistake? She sets her phone back down after shutting it, and moves to sit at his knee again.

"Do you not like the tone? We can change it to something you might enjoy more, old one."

Gently her hand is held aloft as though preparing to take the phone from him once more. "I can show you how."


Marius keeps the cell for a moment as he tries to work out how to get things to display for him. The buttons are small for his hand, and things aren't as intuitive for him as they are for others. "This.." He lifts the phone in gesture before bringing it back down and punching on the keypad some more. The cell rewards him with a few satisfying beeps, but nothing that begins to suggest that it's willing to divulge any messages that may be for him.

"This will be returned…" to Isobel… "at the first opportunity that presents itself."

As the phone blinks back to the 'main screen', it's not five seconds before it beeps again, alerting its owner that there is a message in wait for him..

Marius hands the phone over to the waiting hand. "Find the missive."


Calmly, Bethany takes the phone. Rather than just working it to find the message she holds it up so that he can see what it is she is doing.

Once she has found the buttons to press to locate the message, she lets it go back to the main screen. Then she repeats the motions so that he can try to follow them.

"They can be very aggravating to use at first, old one. Especially these newer ones that can do email and texting as well as regular telephone conversations."

Scrolling to the message she presses the button then holds the phone out for him to take. She has no interest in reading what it is that he has incoming.

"We can work on learning this telephone's nuances together if you would like. I do not mind aiding you in this, so that you need not return it."


Marius watches, the cold blue eyes staring as the buttons are pushed and in which order. There is a great deal that he doesn't understand, so for the moment (and for the next long time), it is by rote that he will learn. In that, he's a better study.

The combination of buttons and screens gives the vampire no little problem, but Bethany is nothing if not calm and patient. When she gets at the message, Marius takes it back and.. stares at it again. He'd learned his letters centuries ago, but there is little use for them when in wars.. and the larger words are a little difficult. The main idea of the message is gained, however, and pressing the little red button, watches as the screen goes back to the main.

"They are the invention of a vexing little breather, and he should be brought forward to answer for it."

Once his opinion on the matter is given, Marius reaches out to touch the lamb's hair, an oddly gentle touch. "I will have you instruct me in this."

Unfortunately, however..

It doesn't last long, nor does the touch linger, when he rises to his feet. "I will take my leave, lamb. The hour continues its pace forward, and there is something to which I must attend now before the rise of the sun."


For the most minute of moments, there is a hint of amusement in Bethany's eyes. It is washed away by calm once more as soon as he touches her hair.

"The man who invented the original telephone is long since dead. I can research the originator of the cellular phone if you would like." Chances are that he was joking though.

"As you wish, Marius."

There is a pause.

She waits a second or two before rising to her feet.

Then comes the question.

"Should I procure some synthetic for when you visit and do not feel like…" Bethany cannot voice the words that stick in her throat. She merely points to her neck giving him a questioning look.


It is usually difficult for one to determine if Marius is serious or making a jest when that 'one' is a vampire, but for a breather? Probably impossible, but for a guess. And catching the flicker, his lamb chose rightly, though he'll never let on as much. She's intuitive, more than most others he's ever laid fang on, so perhaps she will understand even without his words of praise.

"This is far down on my list of things that must be accomplished in this century, so while it may please me greatly to see him suffer, it will have to wait." Deadpanned.

Turning around to face Beth fully, he looks down at her, his expression naturally impassive. "If I do not wish to drink, I have no need. I will not have you drained to the point where you are useless to me." Besides.. "The synthetic is foul.. and I only drink that when required. There are some of us, however, that only take that because of some misguided desire not to Hunt," the capital is evident in his clipped, accented tones, "and take their due."

His voice lowers to a whisper, "I am ever mindful of your ability, my lamb.. and will not be unduly pressed."


The flicker of amusement returns when he deadpans in regards to finding the man.

It too is quickly hidden, lest the fact that she's amused upset him. Bethany happens to like her life.

"As you like then." Her question was answered sufficiently for her to know that when he comes to her he is not looking merely for something to stave off his hunger. The fact that he has not requested it of her this evening furthers that.

"Should you need more help with the phone, you can contact me by pressing the number three and holding it down for a few seconds."

A soft smile, then, "You are also welcome to drop by when you wish. If I am available I will do my utmost to help you."


Marius is slowly getting the hang of feeding off of multiple vessels so he doesn't -have- to cross the border to satiate himself. Now that Chloe has no contact with his willing lambs to chase them off, that is. It makes city life a great deal more agreeable.

That doesn't mean, however, that he doesn't still cross the border on occasion for pure enjoyment.

"I will remember, my lamb. And I will take my leisure here again." For as long as the invitation to enter remains. "I will warn you.. now is the time when concern rises. Keep what defenses you may.. silver is effective." Now that Marius has responsibility for the City in Isobel's absence.. and things <tm> are happening that he's been made aware of.

"Your serenity continues to intrigue me."

With that, however, Marius makes his way to the stairs, slowly.. before there is simply a blur and emptiness as to where he had been only a heartbeat before.

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