All in Good Time [KAKAI] Jul 6, 2013 0:58:16 GMT -4
Post by Phoenix "Nick" Knight on Jul 6, 2013 0:58:16 GMT -4
The last time Phoenix had seen Dys had been roughly two days ago, and their conversation had ended with her telling him quite plainly to get the fuck out. She didn't quite put it that way, but it was the message he'd absorbed and the one he carried with him ever since. He didn't make any attempt to contact her after that.
The travesty of that interaction had left him in an even fouler mod than he'd been in for the past week. It was little surprise when he woke up this evening to a leftover headache from copious amounts of booze. The nausea had already evicted itself out of his system just as everything else did. The only benefit of being a Reaver so far, he noted slightly amusedly, was that he was pretty much an invincible, glorified frat-boy, able to drink and pick fights as much as he liked without fear of reprisal.
This was probably not what Satan had had in mind when he offered Phoenix a chance to change. Whatever, Satan wasn't here to tell him what he ought to be doing with his new strength, and since Dys didn't seem to care what the fuck he did either, Phoenix was going to take advantage of his freedom, however ephemeral it might be.
He left his room at the observation post later than usual that evening. He couldn't quite remember when exactly he'd met Arabelle the night before -- keeping time was not a skill for drunks – but they'd both been too trashed for Phoenix to feel inclined to let her wander home in the dark from the bar full of seedy men. He might have been a full-time jerk, but he was a heartless dick only conditionally.
She had crashed at his place, and it was only when she left that he decided he should stop lying around in a haze of post-hangover disorientation and get moving. The night before, Phoenix had had a clarifying moment of "what have I done with my life?" before he promptly went about seeking the blueprints for a bank vault. If he was going to do nothing useful for Satan, he may as well hone his own powers. His Phantasm was still largely untested in its scope.
He was in the bank again when Dys first summoned him, bent over a desk with the blueprint of the vault lock spread out before him. Phoenix had discovered that his telekinesis had a direct link to his visual perception. If he could manipulate that which he could see, what was stopping him from being able to unlock a combo lock by conjuring up an image of its interior and manipulating it to open with his phantasm? He could then test it out on the actual lock, whose interiors he couldn't see but could envision in his mind.
When he felt that familiar tugging inside him that announced Dys needed him, Phoenix didn't immediately react. For a moment, he thought he'd imagined it. Dys hadn't summoned him ever since the day she'd found out he'd slept with another Kakai. Then, as the summons continued, he realized with a jolt that she was actually calling for him.
His mind flew back to the look of frozen hurt in her eyes, the ice in her voice as she'd told him to go away. She wouldn't have willingly summoned him. Hell no.
Phoenix felt his stomach sink. The next instant, the hovering illusion before him flashed out of existence and he was shoving the crumpled up blueprint into a pocket of his jacket and sprinting for the nearest exit.
The summons came again as he ran down the street outside the bank. Phoenix skidded to a stop at a crossroads, feeling his heart hammer in his ribcage as he figured out where the signal came from. He took off again. Fucking Dys and her stupid fucking recklessness. Of course she would probably not have summoned him willingly, and so she would have the bond to thank.
She couldn't pick another time to get into trouble? Like when she wasn't busy ignoring him?
The axe strapped to his back banged into his spine as he ran. His jacket flapped uncomfortably against him. Not surprising. He'd shoved a flask of liquor in an inner pocket before he left home, and the other pockets were filled with various junk – a knife, matches, a stray bullet he'd found, a few sheets of information he'd needed. Various other junk he'd found inexplicably irresistible when he initially came across it, but stuff he'd likely throw out without ever using.
To his surprise, the signal led him to the Necropolis. Confused, Phoenix halted outside, taking a deep breath before he headed up to the front doors. Had someone insidious gotten in? He couldn't imagine Dys being in trouble inside Overmind HQ.
Still, the chance wasn't one he was willing to take. His hurried steps echoed through the large hall as his bond guided him to a room just off the main. Even before he neared it, he could hear voices inside and he froze, his hand going instantly to his axe.
Then he realized he couldn't hear any scuffles. It sounded as if someone were having a pleasant conversation. He even thought he'd heard a kid. Slowly, he lowered his hand to his side and moved toward the door, just as someone charged out.
He moved to sidestep instinctively, but the woman plowed right into his shoulder. Phoenix stumbled back, realizing instantly she was a Reaver, and also, with some mortification, that he knew her. There weren't many tan-skinned Reavers around.
She didn't wear that same composed, exasperated air she had when he'd met her at the library. He thought for a bizarre moment that she looked like she might cry. She didn't hang around. With a hasty apology, she was gone, her head ducked down as she raced across the hall and out the doors into the night. He stared after her, baffled, but he had more pressing concerns.
An upset Reaver didn't seem like it boded well. Feeling the bond tug insistently at him, Phoenix turned to the room in which he hoped Dys was not dying. His steps quickened as he approached. Why would Amara have been there? That made no sense. Maybe her Overmind was here. Why was Dys here?
The moment he entered, he realized why.
The room was full of Overminds, and he knew instantly he had just barged into a meeting of Kakai. There were seven Overminds seated around a table, a couple of whom looked up at his frantic entrance, and his eyes instantly fell on Dys as he stepped inside.
She was fine. Phoenix blew out his breath, shoulders slumping. She may have looked somewhat unenthused, but she was alive. Why had she summoned him then?
She was seated across the table beside two male Kakai, and from what he could tell, she looked dressed up. This in itself was surprising and for a moment, Phoenix wondered if this were protocol. She sat facing his way. In front of her, with their backs to him, sat three other Overminds and a Reaver. He carefully kept his gaze only on Dys as his insides lurched. Panic dawned on him too late, but he couldn't retreat now.
He knew Patience was undoubtedly here. He didn't need to look at her.
The two males beside Dys would have noticed him, but Phoenix, remembering the chances of them possessing power like hers, clenched his jaw and forced his panicky thoughts from mind. If they had the ability to pick up on his feelings, he was royally fucked, but where it came to thought, Phoenix had learned through experience that it was possible to block most mind-reading, simply because his mind was always such a jumble, even he had difficulty slowing it down enough to understand his own thought process. I can do this. C'mon, Nick. Don't advertise how much you suck here.
He paused uncertainly inside the doorway, not knowing if Dys expected him to come over to her. The meeting didn't look like it was in full swing yet. Several of the Overminds were chatting amongst themselves. Even so, he still didn't want to have to. Any reason to stay as far from Patience as possible.
He was also painfully aware that his ruffled state wasn't going to thrill Dys, especially not in front of her fellow Kakai, all of whom looked about as ridiculously pristine as the cast of a heavily scripted reality TV show. By contrast, Phoenix looked like a rundown human survivor. His run had made his usually uncombed dark hair even more of a bird's nest, there was a very obvious rip in the front of his jacket where a knife had gone in and he probably smelled like he'd spent his week in a bar, which he had. He was suddenly glad he'd dropped the idea of smoking.
He let his eyes travel the room and realized he didn't need to do anything further. He spotted Momo seated in a cluster of seats a good few yards away, and, much to his relief, Gavin near her. That must be the Reaver playpen.
Discarding the much gentler pull of his bond, Phoenix cast Dys another glance before he headed immediately toward Gavin. He only looked up as he caught sight of Momo waving at him enthusiastically. He could only bring himself to nod at her, too terse to speak.
Pothos must also be here, of course. This just kept getting better and better. He counted in his head as he walked and realized the only Kakai he had yet to antagonize were Mammon, Aergia and Phthonus.
There was an anxiousness gnawing inside him, and only when he smacked Gavin on the shoulder in greeting and sat down next to him did he allow himself to let his guard down even slightly. He kept his gaze firmly away from the Kakai table, trying to breathe past the knot in his chest. If any of them were trying to read him, he hoped they were having more luck than he was. He had felt much less anxious, ambivalent and disoriented in the middle of a fight with Vampyres earlier this week.
"So what're you in here for?" he muttered under his breath so only Gavin would hear. He meant it as a joke, but hell, he would rather have been incarcerated anywhere but here right now. He wasn't aware Gavin was claimed by a Kakai. Phoenix immediately empathized with him. No female Kakai he'd met thus far seemed like a treat.
Stretching his legs out in front of him, Phoenix turned his eyes to a window along the far wall. Maybe he could sleep through this whole thing. That would be a nice break. Shit, next time Amara decides to bolt from somewhere, I'm taking that cue. Needing to distract himself, he wondered whose Reaver Amara was.