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Messages - Xiǎodāo

1
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
December 27, 2019, 11:26:03 am
Location: Rooftops

"X, you see anything?"

Dark eyes scanned what she could see of the rooftops, the young woman ducking down by the edge of the roof and peering over at the slowly incoming glow of official lighting on the nearby buildings. This wasn't good. The coppers were early. She knew the general gist of this whole thing was for them to show up and catch the doofus inside 'red-handed' with the illicit pharmaceuticals, but that was supposed to happen after they'd already exited the building and the general danger-zone.

"Betrayal," Johann spat.

She couldn't help but agree. Nodding a little, X made sure her bag was tight on her back and stood to meet the faux ambulance as it landed. "Meet up with them later? Or extract?" she asked, turning her head to look up at Johann for his orders. When Trick wasn't around to tell her what to do, the only person she'd accept commands from was him. Although honestly, she might have just been humoring Tricky anyway when she did as he asked and might have only really been following Johann's lead in the first place. But maybe not. It was nebulously unclear what her motives were when it came to that specific detail.
2
Not in Play / Re: Xiǎodāo Zhāng (小刀 张)
November 05, 2019, 01:10:15 pm
Medical Records

Official:
MALADYDESC-TREATMENT-ETC
INJURYDESC-TREATMENT-ETC

Ship Specific (If going by an assumed name):
MALADYDESC-TREATMENT-ETC
INJURYDESC-TREATMENT-ETC
3
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
November 05, 2019, 12:05:02 pm
"Xiǎodāo, my dear. What do you say, eh?"

Her head popped into view down in the vent and she looked up at him for a moment before clasping the clip of his rope back to her harness, her hands and feet stretching to press against the vent's walls as she climbed out with his assistance pulling her upward. Once free, X rolled away from the vent and uncoupled herself from Johann, a thoughtful frown tugging at her lips. She turned her head and looked out at the skyline, lower lip trapped between her teeth and a deep breath lifting and lowering her shoulders. She'd been listening in on Marty's return on her way back through the vents and considering Trick's behavior at the same time.

"We'd lose in the future," she decided, turning back around to face him and waving her hand in Trick's general direction. His need to be liked and flair for the dramatic aside, they got more jobs with the charismatic Trick as their Front man than they would on their own. X was easily forgettable and unassuming, Johann was more likely to chase off a potential employer than anything else, and Marty was wet behind the ears.  No, it was very likely they'd be more successful if they allowed themselves the occasional inconvenience Trick's magnetic personality afford them.
4
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
October 28, 2019, 12:23:30 pm
Vents

A brow quirked upward as X watched Trick spiral into an act, letting the role overtake him completely. She reached back into her bag and worked the zipper with a finger until she could slide one hand in, grabbing at her own personal cortex device and pulling it back out. With a soft click of the button, she aimed the camera down below through the slats of the vent and began to record, one corner of her lips pulled upward in a barely contained smile. She figured Johann might want to see this, although he was most assuredly hearing it through Trick's comms.

Dark eyes scanned the room while the camera recorded, watching the woman with no name slip the drugs into Dr. Sensible's drink and the mystery woman nowhere to be found. Her head tilted to the side upon seeing Officer Uncomfortable enter the scene and her brows furrowed ever so slightly. Using Trick's shouting to cover any hint of her voice, she whispered into her comms, "Detective is here early," she said, then resumed radio silence on her end, turning off the video recorder and carefully shoving it back into her bag, zipping the container back up with her fingers as she laid still in the vents.
5
The inner curtains opened before Johann and Trick, revealing a darkness within that was only compounded by the fabric shutting behind them. With a couple hard beats against a taiko drum, the lights snapped onto a painted backdrop of what could only have been Shinon, accompanied with actors dressed as the beautiful Companions most attributed to the planet. As they walked down the narrow path, another beat of the drum accompanied the sound of their steps, hand played music from a shamisen somewhere in the room drifting up through the fabrics to coil around the audience of two.

Another beat. Lights flashed off and back on again. Now, Persephone, with its masked balls and aristocracy, the people dressed in gowns almost too large to allow passage down the walkway.

Another beat.

Another scene.

Each moment and each tableau punctuated by moments of darkness. Halfway through, as the lights turned back on and a scene of chilly St. Albans played on either side of them, X walked along with the pair at Johann's elbow, Trick's wallet in her hands. She'd opened it and was looking through any of his personal documentation curiously. She had on the black clothing of those pulling the strings in the dark, hoping to blend into the background so as not to ruin the attendee's immersion while changing backdrops or assisting with costume swaps. Her long dark hair was tied up in a simple braid and she seemed to fade into the darkness with every dimming of the lights.

"I don't think this is your real name," she murmured, barely audible over the strings as she held up the wallet and pointed at an image of Trick along with one of his aliases.
6
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
October 16, 2019, 09:20:02 am
Vents

A small smile tugged at the corner of her lips and she reached up to tap on the comm's button twice to let Johann know she'd heard his message and was on her way. Slowly, X bent down and set her knees on the lower corners of the vents, sliding along cautiously to avoid the telltale metallic thump thump thump of someone crawling through an air-shaft. At each junction, the girl checked the map on her arm to make sure she'd end up in the right place, until finally she laid down on the other side of a wall vent overseeing the party. The shaft's path moved in a square around the room, several openings cut into the walls to provide the perfect amount of airflow to the party guests below. It would just take a moment for her to figure out which spot would be the best for overseeing their wayward sheep.
 
Finally, X spotted Trick's attempt at flirting and the woman who was most assuredly lying about her name trifling with the mark. It seemed to be going well, by their standards. All that was left to do was drug the good professor and let the cops come in guns-a-blazing to find all the evidence they'd planted in his office. Seemed to be a piece of cake. X grimaced a little, settling down to get comfortable while she watched and once more sending Johann a double-tap of her comms to let him know she was in place.
7
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
October 09, 2019, 10:55:31 am
"X, love, how we doin'?"

Vents

The moment she'd heard the flirty commotion over the comms, X had taken that as her signal that the target and his goonies were being properly distracted. Trick excelled at that, after all, being loud and boisterous and attracting all the gazes in a room. Particularly when those eyes belonged to women. She placed the long metal anchor across the width of the vent and quickly extended it by a few inches, sufficiently locking its position with outward pressure. With one more quick tug to check the security of her harness, the girl clipped herself to the anchor and stretched as much as she could in the cramp confines of the vent.

A screwdriver was pulled from her small toolkit and she set to undoing the latches on the grating, setting it aside slowly and carefully to keep it from making any echoing noises. With that, X activated the wench on the anchor and began to lower herself through the opening, moving slowly and looking around as she descended. She paused a moment, spotting a mug with half finished and increasingly chilled coffee sat atop a pile of paperwork. Convenient, but expected. Once she was hovering over the desk, she reached a gloved hand into her backpack and pulled out the carefully wrapped package. Slowly, keeping her ear out for incoming footsteps, X set to undoing the airtight container to reveal the treasure within. One half filled syringe, two vials of what filled the syringe, and a few empty and apparently 'used' containers and drug paraphernalia.
 
Holding her breath, she began to arrange the items on his desk in a believable spread, using a little cloth to wipe some reside onto the handle of his mug as well as onto the pens and pencils available to her. She closed the container and turned her body about, pulling herself back up the rope and stuffing herself into the vent once more. When the vent was screwed back into place, she tapped on the PTT twice again, finally responding to Johann's question about her progress. Her job was done. The rest was up to the main team and the cop in their pocket.
8
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
September 12, 2019, 06:32:57 pm
X returned Johann’s look with a grin and silent laughter. When Johann approached, she slipped out of his way, moving her hip far to the left and then to the right, finalizing her stretching regiment. Her eyes followed him while he got himself ready for her portion of the job, her fingers clenching and opening wide in time to a tune she’d gotten stuck in her head. Another hard yank proved that her own connection to the rope was secure before she moved like a shadow back to the air vent. Nearing the man, she carefully maneuvered around him until she could set her forehead against his for just a moment, as though praying to the gods of luck and villainy for their success. Pulling back, the girl winked at him and wiggled her shoulders, then slipped down into the vent slowly and carefully.

Her descent was smooth and slow, as perfect as it could ever have been thanks to Johann’s and she touched down silently within the beginning of the vent’s corridors. Pausing for a moment, X pulled back her glove’s sleeve to eye the little map she’d drawn on her arm of the interior layout of the vent systems. It was old-school and probably unnecessary, but she liked to have some low-tech tools with her on these kinds of missions. It made it harder for someone to know what she was up to. Couldn’t hack into her arm, could they? With a little nod, her glove pulled back into place, the contortionist made her way through the vents, quiet as a mouse, her brows furrowed beneath her bangs in concentration.

Before too long, she reached a grate. A quick peek through the slats confirmed that she was above the potential politician’s office and her lips quirked upward at the corners. Reaching up to the comms unit on her shoulder, the output volume turned all the way down, she tapped the PTT twice to signal that she was ready and put the earbud into her ear, turning the coms up to barely audible as she in turn waited for the signal that Trick had the target and his entourage sufficiently distracted and well away from the office. The girl sat crouched and coiled around the exit vent, chin on her knees and gaze cast down below.
9
The lights dimmed once again, the faint outlines of those on stage still slightly visible as they repositioned to center stage and new props were delivered to them by attendants in black. A red light snapped to center, bouncing off a glass box about the size of a small footlocker, each of its corners gilded in silver filigree. Red glimmered across the crowd as the two older performers moved the box on its wheeled stand to show it off to the audience, casting shimmering reflections throughout the tent. Their target stood demurely in place beside the box, her hands clasped at her naval as she waited for her cue. Finally, the top of the box was opened and a step ladder set beside it. With a smile, the girl began just as the music changed its tune to a slightly uneasy flute, as though the instrument was concerned for the girl.

Slowly, she entered the box, first standing in it and holding her arms a few inches away from her side, smiling at the audience with a gentle little grin. She knelt, turned, bent, moved like a snake as she contorted and filled the box. The older woman moved forward, placing her fingertips on the lid and closing it, moving slowly for dramatic effect. With a gentle click the music paused to allow the audience to hear, the glass container was shut and sealed with the girl bent to fit inside. Once more, the couple walked around the box, a hand each on its side to turn it in a slow circle for all to see.

The man sitting near Johann might have applauded, might have called out what she'd done before she could have done it, if he hadn't been so preoccupied with trying to remember how breathing worked, his hands grasping at his throat as he gasped inward several times, body bent in on itself. Despite his suffering, the audience applauded and whistled, pleased with the performance.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

At the end of their allotted ten minutes, the performers bowed at center stage while the audience filed out of the tent, emptying the stands. Mostly. When it was just about empty, the older performers turned away from the girl with them and headed backstage. An animal act was slated to go next and they needed to get out of the way for the crew to reset the stage properly. X, however, stood staring out at the nearly emptied stands, a wistful look on her face and a sigh lifting and lowering her shoulders. A hand came up to run fingertips over the golden ornament in her hair, slowly pulling it out, the bun unraveling and allowing her dark hair to tumble free from its confines. Shaking her head at her own thoughts, she turned as if to leave.
10
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
August 23, 2019, 07:52:45 pm
The Roof

Nimble hands clenched into concentrated fists before they slid up through maroon tresses, pulling the locks together and tying them up in an orderly bun. Blunt bangs cut a line across a pale forehead, dark eyes looking out through thick lashes as those gloved hands moved down over secured buckles, yanking at them experimentally to ensure their readiness. Arms reached up toward the dark sky, lithe body elongating and stretching, accompanied by a softly satisfied sigh as the bones down her spine popped into perfect alignment. X crouched down by the opened ventilation shaft and peeked in curiously before her gaze rose to meet that of her partner in crime. Her grin grew with every word added to his justified and curt rant. She was ready, but it was clear she didn't need to confirm that with Johann.

Turning, the girl pulled on the backpack containing her anchoring bar and winch for when she reached the right vent located above the right office, as well as the package she was meant to deliver. Again, fingers curled over straps, yanking them hard to tighten the bag against the curve of her back to keep it from becoming too bulky for the girl to easily slip through the vents.

"He's always late," she reminded Johann in an amused whisper, most of her jovial energy muted in the face of their job. X was nothing if not professional, either from her respect for the craft or years of practiced discipline and repression. Whichever it was, it was a trait that could be appreciated in this line of work. She knew when it was time to perform and adjusted herself accordingly. They didn't need a bouncy ball of mischief right now. Right now, they needed an infiltrator. The mischief would just come naturally. Her head turned away from him and her eyes scanned what she could see without the aid of his night vision goggles. She imagined Marty pacing a hole into the ground somewhere and couldn't help but allow one soft exhale of barely audible laughter to slip past her lips before she cut it off.
11
A soft fog rolled across the floor, coiling loosely in the center of the tent and settling like clouds in the corners and recesses of a geometric setup. Soft blue lights began to light up the vapor as gentle flute and strings filled the area, pushing out the cheesy organ and settling the rest of the chattering audience. In the center of the performance area, a gilded frame had been set up and the shadowed outline of a slender woman stood in the center of its confines. A dim white light centered on the figure and expanded, lighting her portion of the clearing.

The young woman stepped forward, her body covered in a shimmering bodysuit painted with stylized clouds and a dragon running up the left side of her torso, loose silks hanging around her hips. Her long dark hair was piled atop her head in an intricate braided bun, blunt bangs ending at her eyebrows, eyes lined with thick darkened lashes. Golden ornaments dangled from the bun, shimmering softly with every slight move of her head, organza flowers stuck carefully and purposefully into the dark braid.

If it weren't for the stage makeup, she would have looked just like her mugshot, but it was clear to those in the know that this was their man- woman- person. As the music swirled lovingly around her, she began to move, turning her profile to the audience and arching backward to set her palms flat on the ground. Slowly, bare feet lifted from the floor, toes pointed elegantly as she bent all the more until her feet were pointed out parallel from the ground, one knee bent, her body like a drawn bow, tight and strong. The silks around her hips fluttered softly in the slight breeze like a koi fish's tail or the undulating coils of a dragon.

From the right, two older figures gracefully sauntered forward, the fog roiling around them as it was disturbed. One held a paper lantern in their hand, and the other a bow and single arrow. They moved the items left to right slowly, making a show of them for the audience's sake, giving them time to work out what was to happen next. A man who'd seen the show the night before jostled Johann with his elbow, not looking his way as he spoke, "She's gonna' shoot it," he explained in a hushed whisper, grinning like a fool and absolutely unaware of who he was jostling. "Light it up," he continued, nodding.
12
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
May 16, 2019, 10:00:14 am
"She did seem to be talking him up a bit. Happens to the best of us my man..."
"Reckon so. Damn shame that. But don't get so glum, Marty. I'm sure you're still popular as ever down at The Lady Magdalene."

X grinned at their driver, leaning her elbows on the table and setting her chin in her palm, her gaze constant and unstintingly unyielding. It almost seemed like the hadn't blinked in ages. Of course, her entire body seemed to blink all at once when their man-god spoke up again.

"So. X mentioned, among other things, a job?" he asked. X kept her body position the same but turned her head a bit to stare up at the rendition of gods grace compiled into human form. She winced, ever so slightly, and offered him an apologetic smile. X wasn't sorry that she was head over heels for the man, just that she'd said it aloud. Still... those eyes were magnetic. And that hair, the scars, his mouth... There was a soft slapping sound as X brought her hand hard against her own cheek. Focus. Des got one more longing glance before the girl laughed aloud at herself and straightened in her seat.

The girl swayed in her chair to music only she might've been listening to, eyes moving slowly around the room and settling for half a beat upon each face present. Her hands slipped back into the pockets of her over-sized jacket and her lower lip became trapped between her teeth. She listened to Trick explain Des' background, only a little surprised when he didn't list him as a male model. But, smuggler was close. In her eyes. "Might be one little kink the plot. We're gonna need a ringer." Trick admitted. X snorted.

"Sorry to keep you." The brooding darkness that was their next team member apologized on his way in. X waved cheerily at the man and looked briefly under the table at the bottle of beer propped up against Miller's foot. It was still there. She eyed the driver over the table's surface and raised a brow. "Oy, wasn't I just a ringer today? Well... uhh... What sort o' ringer you need?" he asked, belching quite attractively immediately afterward. She grimaced, leaned back in her seat, and waved a hand in front of her face to ward off any smells that might've accompanied such an impressive gaseous display. "So uh what about the uh ringer was it?" he asked again.

"I'll take it from here, Tricky." Johann finally began, taking things over. X smiled and looked up at the man affectionately, her elbow back on the surface of the table and her chin resting on her palm. The way he outlined everything was so succinct and professional and while it lacked the flowery and entertaining additions Trick might've added to it all, it was easy to follow and well explained. That was something she could appreciate.

"Munck; you, X and I will begin analyzing the museum for security weaknesses. Holt and Miller will prep our getaway vehicle in the case we need to make a hastier exit than planned." He delegated and she clasped her hands together excitedly. This was her bread and butter, and why she was here today. X didn't get to participate first-hand in all of their adventures, but she loved when she got to come along and play with the team instead of setting things up from home or rooting them on in spirit. "Any questions?" he asked.

Her hand shot up, "Did we pick the poison yet? Or, I mean..." a laugh bubbled past her lips, "drug?" No killing, remember? she reminded herself.
13
Empress Heists IC / Re: A Shipful of Dollars
April 17, 2019, 04:54:54 pm
She'd done it. She'd wrangled up the Demi-God and successfully led him here, to his destiny. Well, perhaps destiny was too grand a word. She'd led him to a gussied up storage room full of criminals. X thought on it a moment then nodded, smiling to herself and skipping into the room. No, destiny was right. X gracefully slipped around Jiyang and his tray of drinks. Quick as a whip she grabbed one of the drinks and winked at Marty before ducking and spinning away from Jiyang and moving around the table to plop down onto the seat beside Johann, her free hand patting the empty stool beside her. She was more than happy to welcome Des into the group and offer him up some prime real estate. Sitting next to her.

Eyeing the young hot-shot driver, X put the closed bottle of beer on her lap horizontally and let it roll down the length of her legs, her toes rising to stop the bottle in the crook of her ankles. She stared hard at him until she had his attention, then lowered her gaze toward her lap and lifted it to his face once more, grinning mischievously. Carefully, X pointed her toes and gave the bottle a soft boot to get it rolling under the table. It bumped up against Miller's foot and X finally looked away from him, smiling in Trick's direction and pretending she'd done nothing at all.

"How come he looks so dejected?" she asked, raising her brows curiously and turning her head to grin brilliantly at Des, including him in the conversation. Her finger rose as her elbow settled on the table and the digit leveled toward Marty. Again, her dark gaze moved to their boss. "Someone tell him the lady was after a different coin purse than he'd hoped?" the girl added. In truth, she'd been hoping she'd see the new guy get absolutely taken for a ride by the woman, but they had work to do and fun came after work. Unfortunately.
14
"Hey there... X?" The God Man greeted, absolutely intuiting her name correctly. "Pleased to meet you. What's this about work?" he asked, then reached into his pocket and pulled out the card. "I don't suppose this was your doing?" X grinned broadly and nodded rapidly, her hands lifting to settle on her cheeks in some attempt to still her head. She felt a little like a wobbly-headed Geisha doll. Trying to shake herself out of it, her back straightened and X cleared her throat, ready to tell him they were indeed ready to go to work and that yes, she'd been the one to put the card in his pocket, and if he'd just follow her to the back room then they could begin their business. Her lips parted and she stared up at him very seriously (or as seriously as she could manage).

"I love you."

Dark eyes widened and her entire body stiffened before she turned sharply on her heel and began marching toward the back room. "THIS WAY, PLEASE AND THANK YOU!"she told him loudly, her voice clipped, shrill, and full of mortified embarrassment. The girl walked past the newcomer at the bar, sparing her a quick glance and once-over before she slipped behind Rev and reached out to pat him on the top of the head like a good boy. Still, her motions were quick and robotic as she attempted to immediately gloss over what she'd just said to the catalog model.

Glancing back to make sure he was following her, she paused at the door and eyed the security duo guarding it. With a lavish, X gestured toward the guards and bowed a little, eyeing Des and hoping he'd get the massive hint and present his card so the lug heads would get out of their way and let them in. She tried smiling at him easily, but it came out as a pained grimace.

15
During Reverends mental trip, X turned her head to watch him out of the corner of her eye, both brows raised and eyes half-lidded with barely present interest. He seemed to implode in upon himself for a couple minutes and while some tiny part of her wondered where he'd gone, the larger portion of herself told her that it really didn't matter to her in the big scheme of things. When he declined another drink, her dark eyes lowered to the candy sitting at the bottom of his now empty glass and she eyed it, then him, in that order. Either he didn't like it, and she could consider herself offended. Or, he was giving her a chance to take it back, and she could consider herself weirded out.

In the meantime, Johann had finished his song and was moving and looking around the bar, which, considering who he was, caught her attention immediately. The man didn't move or do anything at all without purpose, so she stared at him from the bar, head tilted curiously. Her spine straightened as a wink was sent her way, a little snort and giggle pushing free of her lips unbidden. Reaching out, X moved to ruffle the Reverend's hair before throwing him a pair of finger guns and walking away. Clearing her throat and reciting in her head what she'd say to the man, the girl moved step by deliberate step closer to the demi-god. Hey, my name is X, it's nice to meet you, time to go to work. Hey, it me, ya gurl. Let's go make some bank. Hey, I'm X, pleasure to meet you, we've been summoned for a job.

"Hi-lo. X. Job to meet you, pleasant summons for a work, bank us gurl money!" she told him, smiling proudly at the end of it, her chest lifting and falling rapidly as she tried not to hyperventilate in his presence, her eyes wide, grin far to big, and cheeks a bright bashful pink.
16
"To your friendly face, and your unorthodox way of saying hello," The Reverend greeted before taking a sip of his now green tinted drink. A brow rose at the maintained eye contact and she couldn't help but smile at just how awkward it was to stare at someone while drinking, laughter bouncing about in her dark eyes.

"I believe you have the advantage of me, if only by my vocation. I am Reverend Onyx," he introduced. X put her hands on the bar top and tilted her head to the side like a bird or a confused pup, her bangs shifting to the side a little as she stared at the man. Her expression was a mixture of about ten others, making it remarkably hard to discern what she could possibly be thinking about. Her gaze was intense only in the sense that it was unwavering and focused, although it was in no way intimidating unless the Reverend was made uncomfortable by such prolonged staring. After much longer than was polite or reasonable, she finally said, "I know," in response to his pleasantries, her own name not forthcoming.

"You know I do. Take it our girl gave ya the time and place..." she overheard Trick saying to Johann and for a moment, X turned her torso so her back was pressed against the corner of the counter, chin turning to face where her two superiors were chatting now that she'd heard herself mentioned lowly. She grinned in response, an indication that she had in fact delivered said time and place as she was meant to. Trick left without excising himself and X snorted, her smile ever present.

"My man, shot of whiskey and a pint of whatever is on tap? Thanks," the man further down the bar requested. X's shoulders relaxed and she leaned heavily back against the bar, staring unabashedly at the burly adonis gracing the bar with his godly beauty. Slipping that keycard into his pocket had been an absolute joy, and she'd have done it for free. Turning back around, now a body's width away from Reverend, X set her elbows on the bar top and placed her chin atop her palms, staring dreamily at the man in the leather jacket. That hair, those rings, that bod... X giggled to herself, ignoring Reggie's "Ex...please stop drooling on the bar...Do you want something to drink?"

A nudge pulled X free of the steamy romance novel day dream and she snorted in surprise, turning her head to stare at Johann just in time to catch his wink. "This will be fun," he told her before grabbing his drink and making his purposeful way toward the now unblocked karaoke machine. Laughing to herself, X set her hands on the counter, her back to it once more, and pulled herself up, sitting on it and ignoring the displeased 'Hrrrnnnnn'  droning on behind her as Reggie aggressively dried a glass, glaring holes into the back of her oversized bomber jacket.

"You should watch this, he's quite talented," she told the Reverend, not looking at him as she spoke.

"All they really want to do is... have fun," Johann announced, eyeing the pretty stranger playing with their Marty before the song began. X laughed, genuinely pleased with the shenanigans in the bar tonight. Slowly, her gaze drifted from the man back to the dreamy human incarnation of beauty, a little, 'hmmm' of enamored adoration humming from her lips.
17
Location: Station Bar


Once they'd gotten situated by the bar, X turned her head and watched Trick meet and greet a few of the bar's patrons before she shook her head and grinned to herself, turning her head to watch Marty with her hands in her pockets, fingers toying with the last remaining keycard sitting at the bottom of her jacket pocket. "Got those papers delivered?" Trick murmured to her and she bumped her hip against his, replying with a "Just about," and spinning on her platformed heel to make her way away from the bar top, leaving Trick and Johann to discuss important Marty Matters.

The girl walked toward the karaoke machine, not seeming to pay any attention to the two standing by it. She yawned, a little bored, and lifted one hand to rub at her eyes, thinking about something, her expression miles away. As she neared Marty, X bumped against him purely on accident and turned to fiddle with the now unattended karaoke machine, eyeing the man as though she thought it quite rude that he was leaning all over it and half blocking her from getting at it comfortably. Feigning a defeated sigh, the girl shrugged to herself and gave up on singing, meandering her way back the way she'd come. She stopped a few times, swiping a 'cherry' from a distracted young woman's drink on her way back and popping it into her mouth, holding the 'stem' between her thumb and forefinger.

On her way back to the counter, she spotted the security man enter and offered him a playful wink, tilting her head toward Johann and Trick as she did so. Veering off course, X found herself standing beside the Reverend/Medic, her elbows on the surface of the bar and her chin resting on her palms. She turned her head a bit so she could stare up at the man's profile, grinning at him all the while. X reached into her pocket and pulled out her last borrowed candy, setting it in the cup of ginger ale Reggie brought the man, the sphere of sugar landing with a 'plink' at the bottom of the glass and coloring the liquid a florescent green.
18
"The sprout? I don't know. But I have got a hunch," Johann wagered. When he looked in the direction of the noise and frivolities, X half-turned to follow his gaze. Her head tilted to the side and back again, realizing he was probably right. That was the likeliest place to find Marty between jobs and interesting women. She shoved her hands into her jacket and looked back at the bulldog, grinning in silent agreement. 

"We should give that place a name one of these days," he remarked and X took to nibbling on her lower lip, slipping a hand free to pop one of her candies into her mouth, hiding it behind her cheek. "Maybe we can hold a meeting, ask for suggestions," she joked, laughing a little and moving the candy to her other cheek, wiggling her hips a little in happiness at the taste of it.

The shopkeep interrupted their conversation and the girl turned her head to stare at him, the smile on her face fading into a mask of impressive nothingness as her gaze slid curiously over his sweaty, shimmering face. Almost instinctively, X rocked forward onto the toes of her boots and sniffed the air, wondering if he smelled as bad as he looked, the piece of candy nestled against her tongue now, lips forming a closed straight line. With every glance in her direction, X's brows lifted higher and higher and it took a bit of effort to fight the smirk pulling at one corner of her lips.

"What are you doing?...In public? In public? Your sin was tardiness, and now you try to compensate in public? Currency changing hands where fracking anyone can see it, you blithering tzao gao! You'll make your deposit as agreed from this day forth or so help me I'll break every gorram bone in your body starting with your toes."

Her arms crossed over her chest, one hand resting in the crook of an elbow while the other hand supported her chin in its palm. "Whoops," X said cheerily, finally grinning down at the man from his new position on the floor. Really, he should have paid on time, and really doing this in public wasn't the smartest idea. But the poor man would have faced some kind of punishment for being late on the payment and this was probably the best possible outcome for the man. A little intimidation and humiliation beat getting mauled any day of the week. And, he learned a lesson, which was the noblest part.

"Be gone," Krüger snapped, picking up the envelope when the shopkeep was gone and offering his arm to the girl. With a grin, X slipped her arm into the crook of his elbow and leaned her cheek against his bicep for a second, smiling up at him adoringly. She didn't seem perturbed or put off by the man's display in any way.

"Shall we find our chauffeur?" he asked.

"I think we shall!" She agreed, laughing softly and walking with him toward the lights and music trickling out of the Karaoke bar. There was a happy bounce in her step and she continued to suck on the bit of candy until it dissolved into nothing, leaving her tongue a fun color and making her breath smell like 'fruit'.

Location: Station Bar


They rounded the corner into the bar not long after the candy vanished and X looked around for their new driver, her chin tilted up a bit as her eyes scanned the patrons. She spotted a few familiar faces, residents of the station who frequented the bar just about every night as well as some lackeys of various vendors and contacts they'd worked with before in previous dealings or side jobs. Of course, it didn't take her long to spot him standing by the karaoke system looking pleased with himself and a little twirly, being spoken to by a beautiful stranger which his favorite kind of stranger, from what she'd seen of him so far. "Oh, he's going to sing," she told Johann under her breath, grinning up at him, more than a little eager to see what his expression told her about how he felt about that. She waved at Reggie, who nodded his chin almost imperceptibly from behind the bar, used to tolerating her presence but not wanting to really be her friend if he could help it.

19
The girl beamed up at him, her chest puffing up at the compliment and she popped one of the candies into her mouth, her free hand slipping into the pocket of her jacket. She enjoyed running into Johann, and despite his gruff demeanor, they seemed to get along just fine. X was proficient and did her job well when she was called upon to do it, and she figured that might've gone a long way when it came to putting her on his good side.

"How are you, dear?" he asked.

"Much better now, thank you," she answered, holding up the rest of her candies and winking at him cheerily. As she directed attention to the sweet treats, a card was moved from her pocket and deftly slid into his with the barest hint of any contact between them at all, her large coat closing the gap between them enough to make the quick and gentle movement of her hand neigh imperceptible.

X skipped ahead of him a couple of steps and turned on her heel to face him, sucking on the piece of candy in her mouth and putting the other into her pocket for later. Unlike Johann, it seemed that she liked to savor and prolong her pleasure and desires as much as possible. She could deny herself a bit if it meant more of the same later on. "Any idea where Marty is?" she asked, raising her brows and rocking back on her heels, glancing curiously toward where the shopkeeper had returned to the entrance of his business, a thick manilla envelope pressed against his chest. He seemed reluctant to interrupt the man's conversation, however, and was lingering on the peripheral.

20
A little shadow crept along in the wake of the terrifying man in tweed cutting his way through the station and making everyone nervous. It ducked behind crates, pretended to have conversations with people who were confused about the newest addition to their group, and picked up items at merchant stalls, turning them over as though interested in purchasing them. Of course, the items always ended up back in their place and the conversations abandoned partway.

In the end, the tail settled on walking behind him, attempting to imitate the way he walked and trying to glare intimidatingly out from their bluntly cut black bangs at everyone she passed who'd lowered their gaze to avoid Johann's only to find themselves staring in confusion at the person behind him. Wanting to be the best mimic that they could, dainty hands moved to begin rolling up the thick sleeves of their very oversized bomber jacket, the leather old and worn and its hem stopping at the knees. It was left unbuttoned, allowing the mismatched outfit consisting of a plaid skirt and pop culture shirt (also oversized) to be on full display. They had no tie to loosen, but figured they'd done their best at making themselves look as Johann-y as possible.

"Mmm strawberry. I love strawberry."

"Strawberry is one of the best ones, but I'm partial to apple, myself," she told him, finally making herself known, although it was more than a little possible he'd noticed her before then. X hurried forward, the black platform boots lengthening her stride enough that she could keep up relatively well with the taller man. The girl held her hand out to him and wagged her brows, hoping he'd grace her with a green orb of fruity goodness from the box of candies.
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