Did you just send us to your favourite restaurant?

Friday, July 14th 1995 starts out in a bit of a haze for the five seemingly random strangers all visited by a mysterious industrial-goth guardian angel the night before. Parker decides that though it may not be his normal style, if there are going to be deranged mages after him he should have some protection. A shotgun and a saw later, he finds himself with a capable, if illegal,means of protection. Elizabeth decides that a taser is the safest option for a woman in her position. Both of them waffle on meeting at the mysterious address given to them by Tegan the night before.

Sandra, with little else to do and more questions than answers, decides to walk from her apartment in Southside to the address that she discovers is across the city and on Alba, AKA Crackhead Island.

When Nicole wakes up she discovers that last night was definitely not a strange dream. The sharpie on her hand gives her the address to meet, and more curious than cautious, she sets off in the early afternoon on her bike, taking a scenic ride through the city toward her destination.

Given that Parker not only has the time, but also the instinct of an investigator, after arming himself he heads to the address. Driving through the recent Government Projects that have sprung up on the north end of the island gives him a certain sense of caution, but as he continues toward his destination he discovers that as he passes the current building projects and low income housing, there are large swaths of land, scenic forest flanking the long island road. He comes to his destination, finding a well hewn fence of limestone, a wrought iron gate leading to a mansion that were it not for the neglect and obvious fire damage, would be one of the most immaculate he’s ever seen. Curious as to why the girl would send him here, he takes his time walking the perimeter of the gated property, only to find it is massive.

Meanwhile, Dante reluctantly resigns himself to trying to figure out why the seal was broken in his family home. He hasn’t been here in a decade, and the night of the attack is still burned, quite literally, in his memory. The night that Ordo Necromantis attacked. The night that he watched his best friend Paige be stabbed through the back by her own mother. The night Lance, Dante’s older brother died trying to protect the family. The night he, himself, almost died were it not for a cultist younger than him seeing the terror in his eyes as that knife was almost plunged into his chest… He does his best to shake the memories as he searches the dust filled corridors of the massive mansion. As he finishes searching the uppermost floor of the mansion, he notices two cars, a bicycle, and four people standing outside near the gate. Unsure of their intentions, Dante takes Lance’s sword and heads for the door.

The second to the address is Elizabeth. She pulls up in her pearlescent white BMW and, taser in hand, she reluctantly steps out of the car. Parker, the man she’d met the night before at Wong’s, steps out from behind his car once he recognizes her. Moments later, a girl on a bike shows up and, as she is explaining the odd occurrences of the night previous, Sandra jogs up. The four of them exchange names quickly and wonder as to the reason for being sent to this mansion, but the door soon opens and Dante walks down the long winding driveway, sword in hand, to see what these people have congregated in front of his mansion for. Brief, guarded conversations happen on both sides of the fence before Elizabeth convinces Dante to let them in on account of mutual magic. They say Tegan sent them, but he doesn’t seem to know her though she sent them to him. After looking them over with his Arcane vision, he finds they all have magical auras, though it is Nicole’s that is almost impossible for him to read. He shows them around his once home and tells them he will look into helping them. In the mean time, though elemental magic was considered base and undesirable by Ambrose Ponder, the Chantry leader when Dante was young, Dante all the same remembers some of Paige’s lessons on magic and knows how he can help unlock Elizabeth’s potential.

In the back yard there is a tennis court like structure with large concrete blocks at one end. Parker wonders if it’s a squash court, but it becomes evident that it is for magic purposes. Dante tells Elizabeth to defend herself, and he hits her with a mote of pure arcane energy. The pain is deep and she hits the wall, but discovers that the taser she reached for, unaware that Dante was going to throw literal magic at her, has ignited. She throws the taser to the ground, and the flame goes out, the weapon unharmed. Curious. Now, Dante tells her to attack him. Still very angry that he attacked her, Elizabeth directs her inner rage and a literal stream of fire bursts forth from her hands, engulfing Dante. She screams and everyone looks on in abject horror, thinking she’s just murdered him, only to find an iridescent purple shield around him, absorbing the magic fire and keeping him safe. Elizabeth decides it’s time to take a break, so she can calm herself, and Parker offers himself as the next one to get a magical awakening. Walking over to a tree, he takes off his shirt so it doesn’t get damaged, and he hears “that was weird, huh?” He answers, but looks around only to discover that a crow is talking to him. The two chat for a moment, but Sandra asks if Parker is okay, being that he is having a one sided now argument with a bird. Parker puts things together quickly and realizes that he can communicate with animals. Not much help in warding off deranged cultists, he scoffs. But it’s gotten late and the group has grown hungry, so they decide that Wong’s Kitchen would be a great place to head to.

Wong’s Kitchen is as hole in the wall as ever, and as they arrive, they find a single customer sitting inside, eating noodles. A familiar sight, hoodie, skirt, combat boots. “Did… did you just send us to your favourite restaurant yesterday?” Parker asks the surprized girl. She insists that she didn’t think they’s just show up again the next day, but doesn’t get much more of a chance to talk. As Dante lays eyes on the girl’s face, he doesn’t see the youth that saved his life, he only sees the cultist. He grabs her by her hoodie and drags her outside, hand crackling with eldritch energy, he demands to know why he shouldn’t kill her right then and there. She offers no excuse, no plea, but the other quickly follow them outside and Parker interposes enough to at least ask why Dante is so angry at her, who she is to him. As Dante comes to his senses and reminds himself that she is the one who saved him, she is the reason he is still alive, his anger turns to embarrassment and awkward gratitude. After the situation deescalates, Parker goes back inside as the conversation between Dante and Tegan gets a little more personal. He also decides to eat her noodles, because that’s the kind of guy he is. Elizabeth and Sandra stay outside and, discovering Tegan planned to skip town tonight, they along with Dante plead with her to stay longer, to help. She insists she’s helped more than was expected of her, and Sandra attempts a guilt trip that doesn’t end they way she expected, Tegan flat out stating that she’s done more to keep them safe than they even know, and that life in Ordo Necromantis wasn’t exactly peachy, and that she’s killed more than a few of them over the years. However, their desperation and Dante’s apology and earnest want for her to help out is enough to make her at least agree to stay and help for a little while longer.

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Author: Miranda

Queer gamer girl. Writer. Nerd. Probably a kitty. She/her. Nicknames include: Mira, Kitten, Nerd, Princess Candy Angel

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