Whip Snit

Sheriff's Estate - The Vault

isobel_icon.jpg james_icon.jpg marius_icon.jpg tandb_icon.jpg

Final order of business of the evening, or close to it, depending upon timing, is the checking in with the newly returned Sheriff of Dallas. The evening without is clear, less humid than most summer days, and one that a good number of people, dead and not-dead alike, took full advantage of.
He stands in the kitchenette area, behind the 'bar', before the microwave. Within the unit, a mug of O+ is turning on its warming plate as the seconds count down. Marius' blood-stained shirt is still worn, the red having turned to a ruddy brown hours ago, but it is no longer sticking to his chest, now that it's dried. His cheek still holds some streaks, but now, it simply looks more like dirt than the crimson life-blood that it actually is.. or was. While he understands that it probably is a better idea to change, timing is everything..

The joys of travel for a vampire are vast. With Anubis Air, you are guaranteed safe travel in air-tight, light-tight coffins. The difficulties with this form of travel is that purchases from the destination generally travel separately. While Isobel landed several hours earlier and made a quick check-in at the estate, she found herself waiting patiently for her belongings at the Dallas Love Field Airport.
The door to the estate opens swiftly, and suddenly the home is a bustle of activity. "The luggage is to go immediately downstairs to my suite. That box can go here in the foyer. This one," she says pointing to a third man, "Living Room. Leave the ones marked 'Elliott' in his room." Moving to the fourth man, she takes several slender boxes and leaves them by the door. The marking on these ones simply state 'American Vampire League'. New paraphernalia courtesy of one Nan Flannigan.
When all is said and done, she moves to the couch. Seating herself upon it she bothers not with looking toward the kitchen. "I do hope you dried off or hosed off before coming in." This directed at Marius with a dry smirk. "How has my city been?"

James stands in the kitchen, not so far from his friend, leaning against the island. He'll slake his thurst, such as he might, with the synthetic as it's not his place to usurp the fresh supplies of the household. Though, at the moment, for all that he scents the fresh warming in the microwave, he controls his hunger admirably. He doesn't really want the synthetic, if he can avoid it.
Titus and Brutus, good dogs that they are, lay patiently at the foot of one of the couches. At the disturbance made by the Lady's entrance, they push up to a seated position, ears perked and alert. They even look happy, peeking over the arm of the couch to examine her, nostrils flaring as they catch her scent.
As James recognizes her, he straightens, glint coming into his eyes. "Marius," he says, his gravelly London accent carrying across the threshold from one room into the other, a hint of reproach in his tones, "you should have told me who the Sheriff actually was…"

Right in the middle of the hustle and bustle that happens the moment the front door opens, and remarkably, Marius manages to pay attention to both things at the same time; that is, the warming of his drink and the listening for any orders or commands that may come from the returning Isobel.
Upon receiving her attention, he ignores the blood for a moment in favour of a bow, "Welcome home, my Lady.. and as you can see, your City still stands and has awaited your return.
"And the shirt is dry, my Lady. It is only recently that I have returned home, and will be changing it when the timing suits you."
Once that is done, however, Marius looks to James, allowing for the human expression of his brows rising in askance, "Would it have made any difference?"

"Still standing."
Isobel slowly turns to face the two in the kitchen, ignoring the dogs. "Mr. Stockton, a pleasure to see you within my city." At the scent of the warmed blood, the Sheriff slides her tongue over her teeth to ensure they're not slipping out. "Marius if you could be so kind as to warm up a bag for myself and our guest?"
The only other movement that she makes is to one of the boxes that has been brought to the living room. Nails slice through the packing tape easily enough, breaking the seal so she can begin to remove items.

"My Lady, it is a priviledge, as always," James says, moving from the kitchen to make his bow to the Lady. "I do hope I am now well-presented unto the Sheriff of the City." The dogs rise to their feet and come to heel at his side, his tones suitably formal for such an occasion. That said and done, he remains in a obesiant posture until he has been given proper leave.

"As you wish, my lady."
Turning about now, Marius removes the mug from the microwave and places it on the bartop, waiting for James in the expectation that the other vampire will then bring it to Isobel, thus freeing him up to make the other two mugs. "And yes, it still stands," now, the Whip opens the refrigerator and pulls out two bags, obviously from a blood repository, and a couple of mugs.. and begins the preparation. "There was some concern regarding a rogue vampire, but the information that was gained by us at first was incorrect. There is no rogue. This is the same vampire that we discovered had not yet introduced himself to you."
The bags are torn open, one at a time, with some spillage.. and Marius licks his jacket for the drips, his fangs lowering.. before he realizes it.. and retracts them again. "The telephone you gave me has come of some use, though I still prefer my methods of communication." Older methods.. carrier pigeons?

The Sheriff has half a mind to tap James on the head and tell him he's a good boy. Rather than doing so, Isobel grins. "Do not think to pester me with m'lady's and the like, Mr. Stockton. You are a guest in my home, thus you should feel a little more at ease."
Just like that, the man is given leave.
With the box open, a dark piece of silk is removed. Rising to her feet she offers a courteous nod toward James. Then she turns to the dogs. "Their names?"
Making her way to the kitchen with the black silk shirt there is a frown upon her features. "Should you locate this supposed rogue, bring both he and his accuser to me and we shall deliberate on a suitable punishment for them both."
Shaking the shirt out toward Marius with one hand, she grasps the pre-made mug of blood with the other. "Put it on, and toss the other down the chute."

And that's all James could ever wish. He rises. Were he human, he'd flash a grin at both her and Marius. But, there's no need. So, with a perfectly neutral expression, though a more casual set of his shoulders, he returns the kitchen to help Marius collect the mugs for them all. "Titus and Brutus," he tells Isobel as he goes. "Great grandsons to Atilla, should you remember him." One of the pair he kept fifteen or twenty years ago.
The currentpair wag their tails at her, circling the room briefly before each goes to lay at the foot of a separate couch. It keeps them out of the way.
They're apparently very well-mannered curs.

"As you desire."
That was easy. Marius finishes filling the other two mugs and puts them into the microwave to warm, the sound of the *hummm* serving as something of a backdrop. The bags are thrown away, and upon Isobel's approach, he turns and watches her draw near. A silk shirt?
Marius reaches out to grasp the fine fabricked shirt with a respectful nod and places it on a chair. The pin on the black jacket is removed, then the jacket itself, and placed upon the bartop. While he does so, his accented voice rises in question, "Why would she remember your dog, brother?"
Next, it's to his blood soaked white button down shirt.. and the buttons are undone easily, his attention actually upon James, awaiting an answer.

"Titus and Brutus," she repeats turning to eye the dogs thoughtfully. After a moment, "I approve." As though he needs her approval for the names of his pets?
"That would have been my next question. How astute of you to guess," she replies to James, a mock-teasing tone to her voice. "I remember Atilla well enough. You could not have asked for a better grandsire."
Lifting the mug to her lips, she takes a slow and delicate drink of the blood. "Thank goodness. I was nearly dying in Tokyo. Nan Flannigan has a strict 'no human blood' policy at her offices and there were very few locations to which one could slip away."

James actually does permit himself something of a smile, now — which he directs to Marius. "I had the pleasure of the Lady's company far down south… what?" He turns to glance at her in courteous askance. "A decade ago? Maybe two. Closer to two. Atilla and Janus have been gone at least a decade." Dogs don't live nearly so long as humans, nevermind vampires. Even his, even with the gifts his mastery bestows.
He moves himself out of the way, letting Marius change and the Lady have the room she needs to attend a much desired meal.

"I see.." Two clipped single-syllabled words.
Marius finishes unbuttoning his shirt and pulls it from him and off with a little more behind it than is necessary, perhaps.. and a soft *riiiiiip* can be heard in the brief silence of the room. He looks at the fabric for a long moment, staring at it.. before he puts it down beside the jacket. "Shame.. that was a good shirt."
The *ding* of the microwave comes soon after the tear, and turning around to get the blood from the microwave, he's without his shirt, if only for a brief moment.. the brown flecks of blood residue obvious on the paled flesh. "Here, James.." Perhaps a little brusque, and he sets it on the counter, and his own, well.. there's a moment before he decides that perhaps it's best to keep the new silk shirt -off- before he drinks the blood..
"It was all crafted blood there?" Nothing more disgusting. Granted, it'd do the trick to keep them alive, but.. it is disgusting. "How was the trip? Successful, I take it?"

The rip causes Isobel to set her mug on the counter. "Bring it to my suite and I will see if it cannot be mended. If it cannot you will have a dozen more just like it tomorrow evening." There is no guilt for the lost shirt. Just the desire to see the Whip is both well dressed and comfortable.
"At least a decade." A scant moment in the long history of her life. "Perhaps fifteen years."
Fingers dip idly into the cooling blood. Not something she allows herself to do often. "Successful enough but for the feeding." Her tongue slips out to gently lap the blood from her middle and ring fingers before she sucks on the index finger thoughtfully.
"It will mean more work, but we shall shape the American Vampire League as we feel suitable. There is change on the air, and one that I am not certain will be beneficial for us."

James glances to Marius as the shirt rips. It's the sign of his brother about to enter a full, deep sulk. He knows it well.

'You should have told me, James.'
'What? That I met a Lady 15 years ago? How could I know she'd rise to become Sheriff of Dallas? You might have told me she was.'
'Would it have made a difference?'

James learned well at his Maker's side, apparently.
He takes the blood that's offered him, however, quite graciously. "My thanks, Lady. Brother."
Otherwise, he remains out of discussions of matters of state.

Marius watches the conversation of the two; no reminiscing there, but simply a 'in that place at that time'. That will come later, no doubt. "He is staying at the Carmilla, Lady.. do you wish his belongings, meagre though they are, moved here?"
He takes his mug, and it's an action that James has seen, only in terms of Marius and the process of exsanguination.. his is a tactile feeding style.. as evidenced by his clothing. Echoing Isobel's dipping of the fingers is his own, though it's a habit he'd picked up .. a long time ago. A single finger swirls in the deep, dark crimson-coloured liquid, and he pulls it out to lick the single digit before he lifts the mug. A deep swallow is taken, and, true to form, it was a good idea for the Whip to forego putting the new shirt on.. and the blood drips from the sides of his lips, landing in dark rivulets upon his chest.. onto the bar..
The mug is put down.. and he discovers quickly there is no sleeve of a shirt with which to wipe the blood.. and he searches quickly for a towel. That doesn't mean he's not paying attention, however, "The American Vampire League.. what changes are coming that will not be beneficial?"

Isobel has not been around either enough to know when a full on sulk is about to happen, though it is noted when it comes. "He is welcome to guest chambers here, or he can stay at the Carmilla." She seems not to care much either way, leaving it up to the two men.
As the towels are near her she moves over with one of them to wipe up the bar before offering the towel to the man. It would have been the other way around, though the Sheriff figures that he would prefer to use his fingers to collect that which has spilled.
"The human mayoral elections will be within the next few months. One of the candidates is quite vocally anti-vampire. Thus we need to present the most non-threatening front to the humans that we can for a while. I will need you to be using a heavier hand within our kind. Keep them in line. Find out what their humans are aware of or not and deal with it accordingly. Take care of this rogue and his human in any way you see fit… and find me that cad Darcy."

James won't intrude on the Sheriff's estate unless Marius insists. And since his brother's now in a snit, he'll tread carefully enough. Though not as carefully as others might be forced to do. He cants his head, however, listening to the conversation. He knows Marius' heavy hand. It's inconsistent with presenting a non-threatening facade to the humans.
"Is there any way I might serve?" he asks then. "Marius has taught me well, and I've some skill as a soldier." A beat. "You've seen that."
Nicaragua, anyone?
"I'd be pleased to aid my brother in his tasks."

Marius steps away as Isobel wipes the bar, her guessing on the mark as he cleans himself up with hand and tongue, carefully getting some of the larger drops. When the towel is passed on, he takes it with a nod and mops himself up. He'll have to hose himself down, no doubt, before he sleeps.
"I will do all you ask, and with pleasure." This means a real, city-wide crackdown, and Marius is more than ready for it. He's been given free (ish) rein to do what he deems necessary to carry out her orders, and it will be done gladly.
There's a momentary darkening of his gaze when he looks to James, but.. there really isn't any better that Marius could ask for, other than Valentinus.. and that isn't happening. "And what he lacks in skill, he gains in tact, do you not, my brother?
"I would have him by my side, if you wish it, my Lady."

"Just remember that we are to present a non-threatening front to the humans for the time being." Isobel flashes them both an icily neutral look. "I do not mean coddle them or be their friend, but if you cannot contain your ire walk it off. Unless they outwardly wrong you, of course."
Icy blue eyes shift between the two men momentarily before she reaches for her mug and quietly finishes it off before responding.
"There appears to be something the two of you must discuss. It would well please me if you were to be the voice while Marius were the swordarm, James." The empty mug is set upon the bar and she retires herself to the couches.
"When the two of you are done conversing, Marius, I would speak with you privately."

James gives Marius a smile. His tone is quite reasonable. Not quite casual — he's not trying to bait him, after all. "One of us should weild tact as a weapon, brother. And I'm better suited to it than you."
If nothing else, he's noticed that the Americans seem to have a much greater infatuation with the English accent than the German.
He gives a formal nod to Isobel at her response. "As you say, Lady," he says, like a good soldier.
Or, soldier-diplomat, in this case.

"Non-threatening, yes." How those words can be uttered by the Whip, well.. it does sound odd with with the clipped germanic accent. "I will do as you ask." Walk it off?
"And you, James.. the very picture of tact and diplomacy."
Marius finishes the rest of the blood in a single, large swallow, the drips caught by his other hand.. and licked clean. Once complete, he turns around to set the mug in the sink before he takes up his ripped shirt, the dirty jacket, and his pin in one hand, and the black, silk shirt in the other. "If it is your desire to dismiss us to discuss.. I will return to you as you command, my Lady."

"Good." Isobel nods at how easily he accepts that which she has asked. Were she inclined to, she'd smile. As it is, having noted the look that was given to James only moments ago, she would rather they discuss whatever issues they are having.
"That would indeed be my desire. I will remain here in order to allow you privacy in the chambers down below. When you are done you will come and speak with me." She has things to sort anyhow. Gifts to determine.
"Titus and Brutus are more than welcome to remain."

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