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Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

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"Let us partake in a gathering -- the entertainment is a game of life and death..."
Lucifer Van Bonaparte
~
Prologue
~

β™« Dragon's Crown OST - Map

~
???

The room seemed to go on forever in all directions -- though walls could be seen off in the distance, if one was to walk towards them it would seem as if they would only get further from them with each step. The room itself was otherwise virtually empty, and consisted of an endless number of black and white tiles that were aligned to resemble chess, as if the entire room itself was a game board that went on indefinitely. A single figure stood at the centre of this room - assuming one could even think of such a location as a room in the first place - as they contemplated. Very soon, things would move forward and the pieces would be in place. The figure held out a single hand, and everything faded to black apart from that hand. Various cards representing the Major Arcana fluttered in the air around it, as if controlled by telekinesis. A single card floated above the palm of their hand as the rest of them circled.

Finally, the cards scattered...

~

β™« Naoki Urasawa's Monster OST - Grain

The year was 2012 A.D., and many believed that the end of the world was approaching. Despite that, people continued on their daily lives without concern. In this era, a mysterious individual by the name of Lucifer Van Bonaparte had become a living legend -- possessing enormous wealth and rumours of characteristics that were virtually superhuman. While he had been known as a man who lives in reclusion - away from eyes of the public - his charisma was noted as being otherworldly, and the rare events he had made a public appearance were considered major occasions. Many great deeds have moved society forward thanks to him -- his genius and resources having contributed immensely to a variety of fields and charities. Some had gone so far as to pass stories about how he is secretly behind many of the developments in the world and has played a massive part in society's growth across the board in unseen ways. Unusual occurrences are believed - spoken in small circles - to take place around him, though generally this had been dismissed by the common populace as urban legend and mass hysteria.

One day, a group of individuals received invitations to an exclusive gathering of people that would take place at the private residence of Lucifer Van Bonaparte, which was located in a remote area of Paris. Each of these people - who came from a variety of backgrounds and places around the world - shared one significant trait in common -- they all had something that they wanted so badly - a wish, if you will - that they would be willing to go to any length to achieve, and in many cases they were desperate to have these dreams come true. This made the invitation - which was written in their native languages despite coming from France - an offer that they could not possibly refuse, for the letter explicitly stated that those present would have a chance to have a wish granted -- any wish, even beyond the boundaries of reality. Whether or not these words were a fabrication was anyone's guess, but these individuals all found themselves drawn to learning the truth -- should those words be no hyperbole, their greatest dreams could be fulfilled.

The letter sent to each person included an all-expenses paid return ticket to the enigmatic celebrity's residence in Paris, including anything they needed in order to make the trip. Even more mysterious was the fact that each letter contained a strange tarot card, and information that indicated that the man who penned the letter knew not only the circumstances of each individual but also what they desired. While some of these people might have had their doubts about accepting such an enigmatic request of appearance from a man of whom society knew so little about, they were also unable to refuse a chance to have their innermost aspirations come true.

After the passage of time had moved forward, the moment of arrival fast approached... Their story was about to begin.
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30 Dec 2016 16:14 28 Feb 2017 17:22
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Avatar of Shoryu Magami

Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

Member

Chapter 1: Arrival in Paris
~

Somewhere in Central Paris | April 14, 2012 (07:58 AM)

β™« Cowboy Bebop OST - Space Lion

`Rose... I'm here now...` a young man thought to himself as he walked down the streets of Paris.

It had been a few hours since he woke up from a solid night of sleep after what was a... disorientating previous evening, for lack of a better way to describe it. His flight from JFK Airport had taken roughly eight hours, and he found himself too anxious to really sleep during the trip. This was not due to being particularly frightened, even if it was his first time on a plane, but rather a result of feeling uneasy about the imminent future approaching. Something amazing could be right around the corner but he was also taking a massive risk coming here, which meant that he found himself feeling both excited and uncertain all at the same time. By the time he had gotten off his flight and booked a hotel, he was out like a light shortly afterwards. It was probably a good thing he had eaten prior to getting on the plane, or he likely would have been pretty damn hungry once he woke up. He seriously felt too messed up to even think about food when he got out of CDG Airport's customs, especially considering Paris was overwhelming - even if It was certainly beautiful too - at night-time.

After waking up, he had felt that usual rumbling in his gut that he got in the morning -- the beast that he called a stomach was still giving him grief, even if he was not ridiculously hungry. As he looked at another building and his silvery-blue eyes opened up a little wider in awe, he took another bite from the sandwich he was holding in his left hand -- grateful to find out that a few places had already been opening at the time he woke up, which was admittedly fairly early. He had eaten one of the sandwiches at the cafΓ© - just to settle his stomach a little, since it could be a pain in the neck at times - and was enjoying a second one now as he walked around. At the present time he was mostly just taking a look around the sights -- not everyday that a guy like him got the chance to wander around a gorgeous city like this, after all. He was carrying a black duffel bag over his right shoulder, and had an expression on his face that looked like someone who had never travelled to another country before -- he really was new to all of this.

Walking passed another cafΓ© that had the same nifty patio umbrellas decorating the outdoor dining area, the young man found himself drifting between a variety of distinctly Parisian buildings -- some of them more simple and comfortable like that cafΓ©, while others were larger and almost breathtaking. There was something about the light Gothic architecture that made him wish a certain someone was there looking at it all with him; even if he always wished that person was beside him. That person probably would have appreciated all this more than he did, since even though he had a tendency to be a bit of a dreamer he was also someone who tended to be a bit detached from the material world -- the one who he wished was here with him got more excited about pretty visuals than he did. Still, he was rather impressed, and the fact that it was quite early in the morning meant that things were also rather peaceful, which helped to make things comfortable. The way this place lacked the usual... chaos of his home was probably the reason he could appreciate his surroundings this much. Normally, he would be too busy looking cynically at all the lowlifes in his neighbourhood to really stop and take into consideration how interesting the buildings were.

The young man looked like a simple Caucasian teenager, in all honesty. He had a fairly small frame and was on the short side, and his attractive facial features could easily have made someone think he was female unless they payed closer attention to the details. Light dirty blonde hair gently blew through the morning air as the expression on his light skinned face changed occasionally in response to his surroundings. His fashion sense was the sort of thing one might expect from a downtown kid, with his lower body clothing consisting of a pair of very dark brown cargo pants that are quite baggy, and a pair of very dark brown boots. A black belt with a gold buckle was worn around his waist. His upper body clothing consisted of three layers -- a red jacket on top, a black hoodie in the middle, and a white tan zip-up shirt underneath that had red trim up the centre. The impression one probably got was that he had owned these clothes for quite a while, given how they were a bit faded out.

Today was a very important moment in his life -- a chance to have his deepest wish come true, and set things in his small little box of a world right again. The letter sent to him - received on the first day of the current year - from this 'Lucifer Van Bonaparte' guy seemed too good to be true, in all honesty; however, there was no way it was an invitation he could refuse given what he wanted more than anything. Included in the letter was everything needed in order to reach the man's estate, including a passport - something which the young man had never acquired - and some money (enough to enjoy the sights, to put it into perspective), as well as a map of Paris and even a manual for how to speak the language on a basic enough level to navigate the countryside without problems. There were also instructions about meeting at a certain location outside the airport at a specific time, where those who would prefer to be picked up and escorted to the estate could have such an opportunity; however, this was not obligatory, and they could make their own way there if they arrived late or wanted to for their own reasons. A phone number was also included if any problems were encountered, though attempts to call this number prior to arriving in Paris would have been in vain -- resulting in a dead line.

"HΓ©, petit truc! LΓ’chez le sac!" a man called out to the young man in a rowdy tone, shortly after he had stepped into an alleyway.

"Eh...?" the young man said as he turned around slightly to look at the ruffian, the expression on the young man's face clearly indicating that he had no idea what this guy was saying, and he took another bite of the sandwich as he thought about simply shrugging and ignoring the man as he continued on his way. Something about one of the words the man had used had him a bit... annoyed though, but he was unsure if he got it right. He noticed the fellow actually had a couple of buddies with him, yet still did not show any sort of indication that he was intimidated. The three men had no noteworthy visual characteristics that would distinguish them from any other typical thugs -- they looked like a trio of boozers, to be perfectly blunt.

"Tch, putain de tourists..." the man scoffed, an irritated expression on his face, and then he started speaking in English, "Hey, shortie! Drop the bag!" he continued.

"... 'shawty'?" the young man replied, his eyes narrowing slightly with an expression that sort of said 'oh, you did not just say that', one of his eyebrows raising slightly. Under normal circumstances, he would have just ignored this idiot and turned away to keep walking, but he had to go and say that? "... an' if I say 'no', asshole?" the young man continued, his accent clearly indicating he was from Brooklyn -- the way he spoke even sounded like a Mafioso, and his voice was actually surprisingly masculine for such a 'pretty boy'.

The moment the young man spoke, all three of the men seemingly had their jaws drop at his blatantly sassy this kid was. They understood that the word he used at the end was meant to be an insult as well. While it was mostly the initial man who seemed shocked by the response, the other two were looking pretty agitated as well. They had actually made it a habit of theirs to steal from tourists whenever they had a chance, figuring they could take advantage of the naΓ―ve foreigners. This young man had seemed like the perfect target, given how his petite form and general appearance had almost tricked them into thinking he was a girl.

"Coup son cul, les gars!" the man said in a raised voice at the other two, speaking as though he was giving orders to lackeys. The man was grinning slightly after issuing the command, looking awfully happy with himself. He had thought about giving more bravado and talking down at the young man some more to try and intimidate him, but he was too lazy to bother translating anymore and frankly this pipsqueak was easy prey anyway.

"Aw, man..." the young man said, more sounding disappointed than scared, taking a rather large bite of his sandwich in order to finish it in one go, chewing for a few moments and then giving a big gulp, "All that tawk an' yer sickin' ya girlfriends at me...?" he continued with a smirk crossing his face, dropping the black duffel bag a moment afterwards because he knew what was coming, "Ahrite, laydies! Come get some!" he said. He could smell a brawl from a mile away and knew when people were too stupid - or too drunk, or both - to listen to reason.

"Allez vous faire foutre!" one of the two other men - the one who was closest to the young man - said as both of them rushed the kid. The confident look on the young man's face never disappeared and he simply waited for them, no real change in his relaxed posture at all despite the two men charging forward being noticeably taller than him.

The first punch was thrown, the man's arm having been pulled back beforehand, but by the time the fist had crossed where the young man's face should have been he had already moved, casually drifting his bodyweight to one side slightly to avoid the blow. Honestly, that had been plenty enough of an opening for him to strike back, but he almost seemed to be having fun with this and did not attack yet. The larger man seemed surprised that he had been avoided, but after that brief pause of shock the next punch - this time a hook - came from the other fist, but the young man simply ducked slightly to let the fist fly over him before raising up again, only shifting down for an instant.

Grunting in irritation, the man immediately followed with another hook from the first fist, but that was when the young man retaliated -- with his hand positioned with an open palm, he raised the hand and guarded the punch with the back of it so quickly that the man never even really saw what had knocked his momentum off, and the young man instantly spun his body around at a full circle and used his other hand to deliver a backhand blow straight into the man's face, almost breaking his nose and causing blood to come out of it as the man fell to his knees and groaned, trying to get his senses back and work out if he needed to go to a hospital or not.

While the other man was shocked at what the kid had been capable of, he figured he was off guard after that attack and attempted to flank him as he rushed in and threw his fist at him, but the young man simply took advantage of the other man's larger bodyweight by sidestepping slightly and grabbing his arm as the fist came in order to toss him over, actually causing him to fall onto the first guy. The force had actually stunned both of them badly enough that they currently were unable to do much. Standing up straight again, the young man casually looked at the guy who had sicked them on him.

"Feel like showin' yer bawls yet pal?" the young man said, smirking.

"Petite merde...!" the man cursed, slowly pulling out a knife, which caused the young man's eyebrow to raise slightly again.

The young man was planning to say something along the lines of how the guy was a coward for pulling out of a knife on an unarmed kid, especially after sending his girlfriends to get their arses kicked first, but the man charged at the kid instantly, stabbing the knife towards him. The sound of metal clashing was instantly heard, and before the man could even work out what had happened the knife in his hand had been knocked out of his grasp and hit the pavement next to him. Before he could even react to the situation, a dagger was thrust at him and had stopped only an inch away from his throat -- the young man could easily have killed him if he had stopped any later. Alongside the dagger in the kid's left hand which was now threatening to end the ruffian's life, another dagger was also in his right hand and had been responsible for disarming his opponent.

"So, tell me..." the young man said slowly, his facial expression jovial but the look in his eyes dead serious, "What were ya plannin' do with my shit after ya killed me? I don't even 'ave much money on me, y'know." he continued, finding it pathetic how quickly this fool was ready to take a life over something like money, "... How 'bout ya run back to ya booze now, m'kay? I'd hate ta hafta hurt ya..." he said, the whole aura coming off of him being surprisingly mellow and laid-back for someone who almost seemed to have bloodlust. The tone in his voice almost sounded like he was more or less saying he did not want to waste his time picking on those weaker than him.

By this point, one of the other thugs - the one who had been thrown - was slowly getting his bearings back, but he had no intention of messing with this kid any further, especially when his 'boss' could easily have gotten his throat cut clean open if his lackeys had made one wrong move. He took a moment to help his friend get up, wondering if he needed to take the guy to a hospital for his nose, and then they started to tail it out of there, their 'boss' immediately following suit.

"Petite maniaque!" the man who had been tossed over yelled as they were running away.

"Ey! The name's not 'shawty' either, dipshit! Ya can call me Leonard Christian-Walker, an' don't ya forget it, ahrite?!" the young man called out at the morons, sheathing his daggers back into the belt around his waist in one fast motion.

Shrugging slightly, Leonard opened up the black duffel bag and pulled out another sandwich, smirking slightly as he took a bite. After chewing for a little while, just enjoying the scenery, he swallowed and took a deep breath, "Some people, ey Rose...?" he said out loud, though not inherently raising his voice -- he was not planning to let those idiots ruin his morning. For just a moment, he touched the golden locket around his neck, as if he wanted to make sure it was safe.
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30 Dec 2016 23:53
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Snagglepuss89

Member Seen 23 Apr 2017 21:23





In a cafΓ© for tourists, being overcharged in Paris




There was something... quaint about the tea house Conrad found himself in. There were only two real possibilities for how it's owner lived their life: Either in complete laziness, not giving a damn about it's accuracy, or in overenthusiastic ignorance of real British culture. Across from a comically oversized Union Jack sat a map of the old colonial Empire, with much of the world painted a familiar shade of red. Equally opposed on opposite sides of the room were a portrait of Margaret Thatcher scowling at an uncomfortable looking Tony Blair, as if these were the only two politicians of note in the Isles. Occasionally, the sound of a server could be heard speaking to the patrons, addressing them with words like "Guv" in thick Parisian accents. It was, in every sense of the word, terrible. Almost like a tourist trap you would see in London, and in that sense it did feel a bit like home.

As for Conrad himself, well, he was certainly less of a remarkable sight than the cafΓ©. He was dressed in a dark lounge suit that was clearly showing it's age, a leftover from his days of short lived success. A slender hand poked out from only one of the sleeves, the other conspicuously lacking an appendage. The breast pocket of the jacket bulged out, with the top of a yellow book just barely visible. It was the pocket edition of his French to German (Not English, much to his chagrin) Langenscheidt dictionary. Underneath the unbuttoned jacket a simple, white, button down shirt. No tie to speak of, and with a sleeve tied off around the stump of his right arm, currently hidden away from sight. His pants were both newer and cheaper than the suit he wore, being plain, dark dress paints you could find in any shop. Lastly, on his feet were a pair of old BlΓΌchers, dated but without many signs of wear either. It was the best he could afford to dress for the occasion, a grocer's wages not going very far.

One way that he was remarkable, however, was his actually being British. Of all the nationalities he could see in the small (and surprisingly crowded, without a free table in sight) cafΓ©, very few looked to be from the Isles. In fact, he would wager the only ones that were wore scowls on their faces. He couldn't blame them, personally. Wander in for a little piece of home, and be greeted with both a farce and extortionate prices. He would be scowling too, if there weren't more important things on his mind. Paris was a... city certainly. That fact alone was enough to make him uncomfortable. For all of their size and depth, cities made Conrad feel claustrophobic. Tall buildings and winding alleys that obscured any danger that might come at you. How anybody ever felt safe living in one was a mystery he would probably never figure out.

Still, he didn't have long to contemplate it. After only a few moments more a server came by with his order: Devonshire Tea. It was rather early in the morning for it, but it was his idea of a good breakfast. That, and his short stay in the city had already left him feeling a bit homesick. Odd, how he never felt such a longing for Berlin, but he supposed that England had been the first real place that felt like home. Still, he eyed the tea and scones in front of him warily. They looked more authentic than the rest of the establishment, but he was expecting to be deceived. His inspection was cut short though, by his server commenting:

"Enjoy the meal, Guv!"

"Merci"

He smiled a little at the absurdity of the exchange, before turning his attention once more to the plate in front of him. Two scones, fresh and warm, sitting next to a generously sized cup of tea. To the one side of the plate was a small cup filled with a more-than-ample amount of blueberry jam. On the other, he noted with a sigh, was a serving of whipped (not clotted) cream. Sure, it was not a breakfast that would satisfy him if he was hungry, but it was rare anything satisfied him in that state.

He wasted no time breaking one of the scones in two and applying the sides, first the cream and then the jam, to each half. Then, half expecting disappointment, he took a tentative bite out of one.

Damn.

It wasn't authentic, but it was good. You had to hand it to the French, even if they screwed up every other detail they knew how to cook. The tea too failed to disappoint, again lacking authenticity but making up for it in flavor alone. He made a mental note to visit the place again if he had the chance.

If he had the chance.

Reminded of his entire reason for being in the city, He pulled out an envelope from behind his dictionary and laid it on the table, staring at it as he sipped his tea. Lucifer Van Bonaparte. He'd heard rumors about the man- who hadn't?- but to receive a letter from him? And what a letter it was. Unspoken conditions, a tarot card, an invitation to the man's very own mansion. All of it was unnerving.

Even more unnerving though, the invitation was not in English. It addressed him by his original name, not the one he had taken up since leaving his home country. The information likely wasn't impossible to find, but what business did Mr. Bonaparte have digging into the personal life of a small time British author? Was he a fan of Conrad's work? Something told him that there was more to the story than that alone.

Not to mention, his wish.

The language the letter was written in, the use of his old name, the tarot card within: it was absurd to even consider, but somehow he knew that this man could tell what he desired. The more he thought about it, the less sense it all made. He fought back a growing sense of unease by stuffing more of the cone in his mouth, but the taste seemed more dull than before. April 14, 2012. Today. Could his wish really be granted? Was it even possible? What price would he have to pay in exchange?

All these questions and more occupied his mind as his tea cooled off in front of him. However, one stood out more than all the others combined, the one for which he had no answer to at all:

Out of everyone who was there... why me?
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31 Dec 2016 11:31 28 Jan 2017 15:11
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tsukune The Asian Zenpai

Member



Reinald Wong



Paris, France_
β™« Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST - A Day Like any Other / Day of the Sun

It was often said that Paris was the city of love for those spiritual ones; in the eyes of the more materialistic individuals, it was the metropolis for fashion. However, upon arriving in the country filled with so many mystical rumors that captivated those who longed to come here, Reinald Wong could only say one thing.

What a bunch of stupid lies.

His first impression of the so-called romantic country had been going downhill ever since he touched down at Roissy Airport. He couldn't help feeling that French people were a rude lot, even more frustrating with the language barrier. At least he finally managed to get back his travelling backpack, which somehow ended up in the Lost Baggage area for reasons he had feared before coming to France. After a quick check to make sure nothing was magicked out of his bag from those thieving baggage handlers infamous in most European countries, he left the airport building and was chauffeured to the accommodation arranged for him prior to his arrival.

His series of unfortunate events didn't end there.

No, it wasn't about the hotel - on the contrary, it was more than what he could have bargained for. Not a five-star classy place per se, but decent enough for at least week worth of stay, and perfect for any casual travelers coming here for a free-and-easy tour. It was what happened after he decided to use the spare time to roam around the city for a bit of sightseeing - after all, it wasn't often one could come to such expensive place with all expenses paid by someone else. He left most of his belongings in the room, only taking the letter - the reason why he was here - and his valuables stuffed into his hoodie pocket (today's slogan: "NO FUN, NO LIFE"), then exited the building. He spotted a cafe just up ahead, and brisked towards it.

Coffee was about the only thing Reinald could communicate over the counter for some light refreshments. The female barista chuckled at him, which made the Asian young man more conscious about his terrible pronunciation as he turned his head away in embarrassment while waiting for his drink.

He probably should have taken up a French module back in school when he had the chance.

He was glad when the cappuccino was finally ready and served, but before he could leave, the barista had grabbed his hand. He frowned, not understanding a single word she was saying to him, until she made a hand gesture to her ear with a seductive look.

She was asking for his number... and probably something even more.

Reinald stood frozen for a moment, trying to digest this sudden turn of situation. Then he shook out of her grasp with a hurried apology, swept his hot drink off the counter and headed out of the cafe without another word. He swore that his face felt warmer than the styrofoam cup in his hand.

Okay, maybe he should take his words back. Paris was more than just a romantic city - it was creeping him out.



Scrolling down the labyrinthine streets while taking in the scenery completely different from home (and sipping on real coffee, not those overly sweetened crap back where he was from) was quite an experience, enough for Reinald to forget about the hiccups that had happened to him from before. Other than romance and fashion, Paris was also well-known for their nightscape, and hence hailed as the City of Lights... according to the pamphlet in his hand. He wasn't particularly interested - he felt that it would be pretty much the same in any major cities around the world - but it wouldn't hurt to stay long enough to snap a picture of it. He could use a new background for his mobile screen.

His mundane thoughts was interrupted by the sound of people fighting in one of the alleyways in the vicinity. He was even more surprised when he caught one of them shouting in a language that he could understand, albeit with a thick accent of sorts. Curious, he looked around, trying to find the source of the noise... And he got his answer when some gruff-looking men scrambled out from around the corner, in a great hurry to get away from something that seemed to terrify them. Reinald couldn't help raising an eyebrow as he watched the thugs disappeared down another alley. Paris is sure full of surprises...

Even more amusing when the something - or rather, someone - who walked out of that same alleyway those men ran out from was a young teenage boy. Obviously Caucasian, though somewhat on the short side. Munching on a sandwich nonchalantly as if all the yelling and cursing just now were merely Reinald's hallucination. So early on this fine morning? That's bullshit.

"Hey," he called out to the blond in unaccented* English. "I thought I heard a fight somewhere around here just now... You okay?"

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31 Dec 2016 13:09
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Aewin The Ultimate Blobfish

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LOST SOMEWHERE IN PARIS.
The moment Lucia stepped off the plane, everything inside her screamed for her to turn right back around and purchase a return ticket back to London. She had only recently started getting used to living alone in the bustling capital of England and here she was, all alone in a foreign land. Hanging from one shoulder was a small carry-on, with her passport and other items peeking out from the half-zipped bag, and her palms were wrapped around the dark handle of her maroon suitcase. Like a lost tourist, Lucia was stood at the front of the arrivals gate from which she had come through a few minutes ago, looking around the airport with widened eyes.

No matter how much she wanted to go back home and curl up under the comfort of her covers with her cat, Sugar, she knew she couldn't let herself go through with her wishes. There was a lot at stake, and the pressure kept eating away inside her. If Lucia stays, she'll get what she wants. If she stays, she'll get her wish fulfilled. How could she say no to that? The fact that she was already in Paris should be proof enough that she wanted it desperately, so what's one more day?

'Yeah... one more day. Keep telling yourself that, and just maybe you might actually listen.' Psyching herself up did little for the pickle she had found herself in. Her stomach turned, and her mouth turned down as she felt the familiar tingle of nausea building up. The flight she had taken from Heathrow had been particularly turbulent, and for a first-time traveller, it was a complete nightmare. It had taken her all her willpower to stop herself from getting sick on the aircraft, but Lucia could still feel the after-effects of being up in the air for far too long.

Someone brushed past her side in a hurry, pushing her to the side and throwing a half-hearted apology from over their shoulder before disappearing into the crowds in front of her. The impact caused her to drop her carry on in surprise, the contents of the bag slipping out easily across the polished flooring. Lucia quickly dropped to her knees, biting down a squeal of shock as she tried to gather her items before some other hurried businessman would step over her things in their hurry. Lucia collected the items, pressing it against her chest and in a hurried motion stood up - which didn't help the feeling of nausea.

Thinking it to be best for her to get out of the way before she finds herself in another collision, Lucia looked around for the nearest uncrowded area of the airport to try and get her valuables safely tucked away into her carry-on bag. It took a while, but eventually Lucia was able to snag a corner to herself long enough to hide away her passport, deciding to keep her invitation letter from Bonaparte and the handy guide to help her find her way around the new city. Her first priority was to find a place that would serve a nice steaming mug of chamomile and honey tea. When sick, Lucia found that nothing was better than that particular flavour. Maybe it was because it reminded her of home, or maybe she simply craved the comfort that only a warm cup of tea could bring her.

Maybe she was being a little picky, but Lucia wasn't comfortable with the idea of going to the crowded airport cafe and trying to explain with her broken French-English hybrid language to ask for the exact tea she wanted. She did the next best thing she could: using the internet to find an English speaking cafe that was close enough so she could find her way back to the meeting spot near the airport entrance. When she found something that looked particularly interesting, Lucia took off on her own little adventure.

With the map on her phone, it should've been impossible to get lost so easily, but after a few wrong turns in the bustling city was enough. It didn't take too long for her phone to turn off from the lack of battery either, denying her access to the map.

You're on your own. And in this foreign city, she was.

Frustrated, Lucia shoved her phone back into her bag. The internet usage was reaching its limit anyway, so she knew she didn't have long before she'd lose the remaining balance if she continued using the crappy app. She felt the eyes of passersby, causing her to duck the lower half of her face into the deep red scarf she had wrapped around her neck, her eyes staring down at the cobblestone pavement in embarrassment.

'Stop looking at me like that...' She shakily readjusted her grip on her suitcase, knuckles turning white from the pressure. Lucia stood for a moment longer before she took hasty steps forward, eyes still averted. She didn't bother checking the direction which she was headed, she just wanted to get away from the prying eyes around her. Only when she turned the corner, she looked up. Her eyes found a cafe tucked into the corner of the street, and she sighed with relief.

It didn't matter if the cafe didn't have exactly what she wanted anymore. She just wanted to sit down and forget about her luck with technology. She approached the cafe, and almost cracked a smile as she noticed the exaggerated use of the England flag and all things British inside. The bell lightly jingled as she stepped through the doors, and she was met with a rush of warmth and comforting smells of tea and baked goods.

The familiar scents brought her anxiety down, making her feel a little more comfortable in the new city. Lucia could almost cry in relief as she heard the barista call out to her in accented English, greeting and beckoning her closer towards them. She approached the counter, her eyes scanning the menu above before requesting her drink in a small voice. She didn't mind the overly expensive price tag at this point, she was willing to take anything. While she waited for her tea, she looked around the crowded cafe but found no available seats much to no avail.

"'Ere you go, ma'am!"

The barista's voice caused Lucia to almost jump in surprise, and her eyes darted back towards the barista behind the counter. In her hand was a tray with a porcelain teacup and a teapot, and Lucia reached out to take the tray from the server with a small smile. "Thank you," the accent in her small voice was clear.

She turned around to look for any free tables. Lucia hoped that in the minute she had looked away to take the tray from the barista someone would have left, but her luck wasn't that good. She looked around, only stopping at a table occupied by a man sipping tea and reading something. He looked alone, but the single seat opposite him was the only one available in the crowded cafe. Her hand tightly gripped the tray, and she attempted to juggle her suitcase, carry-on, and the invitation letter and guide from Bonaparte towards the man sitting alone.

When she was close enough, Lucia took a deep breath before opening her mouth. "E-excuse me, s-sir?" Hoping the man could understand English, she continued, "M-may I s-sit here? Th-there are no ot-other seats in h-here a-and this is th-the only one f-free..."
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Melo Captain* Melo

Member Seen 23 Apr 2017 21:00


Location: A cafΓ© somewhere in central Paris


The French coffee was just like she remembered it to be: extraordinarily bland. It had been that way in every cafΓ© she had visited. Sometimes it seemed as if the only drink the French could make was a glass of wine. Alas, she couldn’t drinking wine all day, no matter how much she’d like to. Thus, coffee would have to serve as a very poor alternative. This was her last and only day in the city itself, anyway. She hoped her destination had consumptions of… a better quality than what she was served here. It would be a crying shame if the illustrious Lucifer Van Bonaparte did not even know what a good cup of coffee was.

She looked over her invitation once more, then sighed. β€œA lie.” She muttered. β€œHe must be lying.” She could think of no other alternative. That didn’t change that this entire letter was in incredibly bad taste. It was obvious that Bonaparte had access to a great amount of resources, but why invest those into looking into her? Truly, the information that was included in the letter surpassed something you could simply find with a simple internet search. But then again, surely Bonaparte wouldn’t have trouble hiring a private investigator or two. But why would he? Was invading the privacy of others and inviting them to his gatherings the billionaire’s idea of a good time? But what other explanation was there?

Nevertheless, there was no reason for her to not accept his offer. What did she get out of it? An all-inclusive trip to Paris and a chance to meet a mysterious celebrity and stay at his mansion for, if the letter was to be believed, a few months. All in all, that was still a very interesting proposal. Even if her ultimate wish was not going to be fulfilled, there was so much else she could get out of becoming a little buddy-buddy with good sir Bonaparte.

Olivia was a medical researcher, and a pretty good one at that. Nevertheless, a scientist never had enough funding. There was always more to research, more to uncover. It wasn’t hard to see for Olivia why this meeting could end up extremely beneficial even if the part about their greatest wishes being fulfilled was an obvious lie. It wasn’t hard to imagine that Bonaparte could be willing to do a little bit of Philanthropy and donate a few millions to curing some very rare and deadly diseases. That would make Olivia’s time spent in this city more than worthwhile.

Olivia leaned back into her chair and sighed. She shouldn’t get her hopes up yet. If Bonaparte was the type to play pranks on people, she shouldn’t expect too much. Her inner skeptic had been working overtime ever since she received that letter. She turned her head and looked out of the window that showed her central Paris’ bustling streets.

Perhaps a break was in good order.

She quickly paid for the coffee and returned to the streets of Paris. She had no idea what was going to happen, and sitting around wondering was not going to change that. What she did know was that wasting the opportunity to entertain herself in Paris was a crying shame. Casting her doubts aside, it was time to bring a visit to the Champs ElysΓ©es before heading towards that damned estate.
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Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

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Somewhere in Central Paris | April 14, 2012 (08:21 AM)

β™« Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST - A Day Like any Other / Day of the Sun

`Shitty way ta start the day, but it was kinda funny...` Leonard thought to himself -- he was amused and annoyed at the same time.

Now that the drama was over, he took a look at his surroundings again. Honestly, the more artistic and romantic side of him really had to appreciate this city from an aesthetic point of view. Even if he could not say anything particularly significant about the people who lived here - considering his only human interaction since arriving had been those buffoons, unless you counted the one or two words he had spoken at the cafΓ© to order food and his hotel when checking in - the city itself was beautiful. He could look passed the idiots thanks to that; however, it was not as though he was assuming everyone who lived in Paris was a prick like those boozers -- there were both good and bad people everywhere in the world. After all, Leonard came from a place full of violence, yet even in that terrible environment he had managed to meet her... and his dad - well 'adopted' dad, but he might as well have been his dad - was a good guy at heart.

"No point sittin' around waitin' fer shit ta happen..." Leonard said out loud, but not really raising his voice or anything.

After standing up again, he stretched for a moment to relax his muscles a little and let everything loosen. Soon enough, he picked up the duffel bag again, swooping it over his shoulder once more. He looked around and remembered which direction he was going in before the 'three stooges' decided to pay him a visit. There was still plenty of time to enjoy the sites, considering that little brawl had only taken a minute or two. Given his background, he was extremely accustomed to getting into fights with lowlifes -- the main difference was that it was entirely possible the lowlifes would have guns where Leonard was from. He really hated those things, but did not inherently hate people who kept them considering his dad owned guns. He had no misconceptions about every person who owned a firearm being evil or something, but he really would never be able to understand why weapons like that had to exist in the first place. Even if there was a good historical reason that some more educated person could tell him, surely that reason did not outweigh how many lives were meaninglessly stolen by such devices.

Shrugging the internal social commentary going through his head off for now, Leonard turned around and started walking out of the alleyway, taking another bite of his sandwich with a nonchalant expression on his face as he exited and turned corner slowly. He was feeling rather melancholy, like he often did despite being a dreamer of sorts who usually tried to keep his chin up regardless of how shit his life became. He was not naΓ―ve or anything - sort of impossible for that given where he came from - but he nevertheless believed that being excessively pessimistic was unhealthy. Of course, being excessively optimistic was unhealthy too, so he usually tried to find a balance. While he never usually was the type to adhere to the philosophy of 'all things in moderation' - being a bit too passionate and emotional for such a static ideology, honestly - he could get behind it in that sense. His dad had always taught him to be a realist, no matter the circumstances, and - in spite of his seemingly unimposing appearance - Leonard was remarkably strong inside. He just got moody at times, but thankfully he was feeling a bit relaxed right now.

"Hmm...?" Leonard muttered under his breath as a voice addressed him all of a sudden, and in English this time.

There was no mistaking that the fellow who had just addressed him was Asian, though specifically what ethnicity could be anyone's guess as far as Leonard was concerned. He hated making the whole 'Asian people all look alike' stereotype, but physically this guy fit the bill. He looked roughly about the same age as Leonard; however, the possibility that his ethnicity was also making him look a bit younger had not left Leonard's mind, since he was familiar with Asian people looking a bit young sometimes -- he had run into enough people of Asian ethnicities back in New York. He was also a bit taller than Leonard, a fact which was a little bit annoying - since it meant this guy probably thought he was short - but it was not significant enough to bother him. Not that Leonard actually resented people who were tall or something, but he got irritated when people looked down on him because of his appearance. The expression on the fellow's face did not imply anything like that though, at least for now.

As Leonard was listening to the inquiry, it became clear that his little scuffle had been heard. With no idea what exactly had been heard, he figured it was best not to make any assumptions. At the very least, he doubted this guy had heard him talking to himself, so he probably heard all the cursing and possibly someone taking a blow -- not much else. Maybe he had heard Leonard yelling at them near the end, but considering he never addressed him by name that was not all that likely unless the Asian dude just thought it would be awkward to come up to a complete stranger and use their name. Then again, most people did find that awkward -- Leonard was not really fond of formalities though.

It was also possible that he simply did not think that Leonard could have been the owner of that New York accent he had heard -- would not have been the first person to get thrown off by the voice that came out of Mr. Christian-Walker's mouth; nor would he be the last. He was possibly just overthinking everything though, but his dad had sort of drilled it into his head to look for the details if he wanted to know the truth.

It was time to find out, one way or the other.

"Oh yeah, I'm fine..." he said casually after gulping down his recent mouthful -- his surprisingly masculine voice already becoming clear even if he had not said anything yet which forced him to show how thick his accent was. Thankfully, Leonard being in the middle of chewing on a bite of his sandwich gave him thinking time earlier, so his somewhat late response should not have come across as unusual for the Asian. "Those assholes were tryin' mug me, so I taught 'em a little lesson, s'all... Tawk about a rough mornin', huh?" Leonard continued earnestly, deciding to just be completely honest with the guy -- he had nothing to gain from lying. Waiting for a response, he observed the guy closer, noting his fashion sense.
1 Jan 2017 9:08 1 Jan 2017 13:12
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tsukune The Asian Zenpai

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Reinald Wong



Somewhere in Central Paris, France_
β™« Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST - A Day Like any Other / Day of the Sun

Reinald didn't care much for the Caucasian boy's short height or even the deep voice that would probably surprise most people, because he was more amused at the strange accent in the counterpart's response. He wasn't quite sure where he had heard such an accent before; all he knew was that it sounded distinctly American.

So it was this guy whom he had heard shouting just now. Well, at least he could save himself from another embarrassing moment of trying to speak broken French, again.

He studied the boy for a moment - to others, he seemed as if he was checking to make sure this American was really alright. But the other reason, the hidden one, was merely an old habit of his: the power of observation that was essential in one's daily life, even in his field of study and (the not-so-healthy hobby of) gaming. Besides, it was a natural reaction for most people to form a first impression of any stranger they first met. The boy looked very much like your stereotypical street-smart teen in various media and fictions, especially the way he had dressed, and his body language... both of which made a strong contrast with his unmanly facial features (except for the voice, which was even deeper than Reinald's own). Well, fictions were largely based on reality anyway, and he wasn't the one to say about contradictions between outward appearance and the inward self, either.

"...Yeah, that's rough," he finally replied with a small shrug, a little distracted as he was reminded of his own bad morning. "You're clearly not a Parisian... I guess you're a tourist like me, then?"

He took a big gulp of coffee from the takeaway cup in his hand - by now it was lukewarm, and he felt a little thirsty in the dry, spring breeze. He eyed the sandwich in the American boy's hand, but didn't feel one bit hungry, not with bits of raw tomatoes poking out from the sides of the food.

"Almost forgot... I'm Rein, by the way. Nice to meet you."
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Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

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Somewhere in Central Paris | April 14, 2012 (08:29 AM)

β™« Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST - A Day Like any Other / Day of the Sun

`Yeah, kinda guessed my accent'd make it obvious I'm not from here...` Leonard thought to himself when the Asian dude mentioned neither of them being Parisian.

Taking another bite of his sandwich, Leonard thought to himself a bit while making sure not to miss anything if this fellow decided to keep talking. It might have seemed a bit rude to start eating again instead of answer the guy's inquiry about him not being from Paris, but considering he had taken a sip of his coffee just now it likely did not matter if Leonard failed to give an immediate reaction. The very little he could make out of the guy's clothing was that he looked like a hipster, which technically meant they both had a rather 'casual' fashion style. Leonard was kind of used to the stereotype that Asians were serious looking workaholics in suits, but this guy looked like a street punk similar to him. Both were wearing hoodies as part of their outfits, but neither of them actually had them up at the present time. He had noticed the wristwatch when the guy raised his hand to drink his coffee, and had also made a mental note of the headset around his neck. Leonard had a headset of his own, but it was currently in his bag since he wanted to take in the sights more aesthetically. Unfortunately, that headset had not made it any easier for him to sleep on the plane -- there was way too much on his mind.

`'Rein'...? That... doesn't sound all that Asian -- unless this guy's from an English speakin' country or somethin' an' his parents gave 'im an Anglican name, maybe...` Leonard contemplated, shrugging slightly to himself. At the very least, he was somewhat glad he could stop mentally calling this guy 'Asian dude' now -- not that he was being racist or anything, but it was sort of weird.

Leonard continued to chew the ham, cheese, and tomato sandwich. He was aware that a lot of people disliked eating tomatoes, especially when raw or by themselves, but he had always loved it and actually ate them on their own a lot of the time -- something else he had picked up from his dad. The expression on Rein's face as he eyed the sandwich gave Leonard the impression he was one of those people who disliked it, but it was hard to be sure -- just the vibe he got from his body language.

Rein had not mentioned anything about - or seemingly even reacted to - the daggers that Leonard was equipped with, but they were admittedly sheathed on his belt in a way that concealed them quite well. He did not seem armed either, but then again not everyone lived in a neighbourhood where you pretty much needed to be ready to defend yourself at any moment. It did make him wonder even more about where this guy was from, but he figured he needed to respond to the previous question before saying anything else, and he needed to introduce himself. Luckily, the fact that he started taking a bite to eat moments before Rein had asked him something gave him plenty of thinking time. Honestly, Leonard could go off into his own world sometimes and lose track of where he was -- not the best habit for someone who lived in a violent place.

"Yeah, you too..." he said after swallowing his current bite of food, "Name's Leonard -- ya can call me Leo, if ya like." he continued. He wanted to reach out his hand and offer to give the guy a handshake, but he was unsure of what culture he was from or whether or not it would be offensive or hostile somehow. Leonard was not all that educated, but he was very street-smart. Not to mention that he often avoided shaking hands with people simply to prevent a potential sneak attack. Besides, his hands were both full -- could not exactly shake hands even if he wanted to.

"I'm not from around here, yeah..." Leonard said to get back to the previous comment, "On a trip from New York -- first time travellin', actually." he continued, being honest as usual. It was strange for someone who lived in a bad neighbourhood, but Leonard was the type who disliked hiding things needlessly.

Considering he had just said where he was from, Leonard thought perhaps Rein would state where he came from in exchange, but was not particularly expecting it or anything -- he was curious though.

It was not unusual for Asian people to be tourists; in fact, he knew of a lot of stereotypes involving it, but the fact that there was no distinguishable accent to Rein's voice as he spoke English made it difficult for him to believe this guy was from an English speaking country. Generally speaking, Asians who were born outside of their country ended up having the accents of those around them (in the same way that Leonard sounded like a New Yorker because he was from New York, not because he was a Caucasian), so this guy's lack of a distinct accent meant that Leonard immediately could not help but naturally wonder about where he was from. Sometimes, when Asians he met spoke English - and it was not their first language - it would come out sort of weird, making it difficult to understand what they were saying at all. Such a problem usually disappeared if the Asians were born in the country, or their parents were. This guy's English was clear enough in contrast; however, the lack of a distinguishable accent was hard to really ignore due to that.

American, English, Australian, New Zealander -- they all had a distinct sound to them that was easily recognized. In particular, Americans could often have their state worked out by accent. Leonard was confident about his assessment -- whether Rein actually came from one of those places or not, he did not sound like he did. It was virtually impossible for a westerner not to notice that. Either he was not from one of those places, he had a weird speech pattern, he moved around a lot, or he was trying to hide his real accent. Given how Leonard lived in a society where people wore masks and lied to each other - which he despised - this possibility was not out of his mind.
3 Jan 2017 14:00 10 Feb 2017 10:55
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tsukune The Asian Zenpai

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Reinald Wong



Somewhere in Central Paris, France_
β™« Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST - A Day Like any Other / Day of the Sun

Reinald could tell the American boy - who had introduced himself as 'Leonard' - was studying him very, very closely. It didn't look like the blond had bothered to hide the fact that he was trying to analyze everything about Reinald as much as he could, from his physical appearance and fashion sense, his name... even the way he was speaking. The act of munching on his sandwich didn't seem to do much to distract those watchful eyes glued on the Asian man. If it wasn't because Leonard was probably just being cautious towards him as a stranger (one couldn't be too careful with the kind of people they meet, especially in a city like this... and Reinald had learned that the hard way a couple of hours ago), he would have felt extremely uncomfortable to be stared at, especially with such unnerving intensity as if the American was trying to suck him into those cold, blue eyes.

Well, it wasn't the first time people had done this to him - everyone would do that, judging others based on what they could see with what they already knew or had experienced before. Girls would steal looks at him because he had an 'eye candy-tier' appearance (according to one of his friends back in his hometown), but the guys... were more complicated. Aside from the usual looks of contempt and jealousy thrown at him when he was asked out by the girls in his class, he was once told that one of the male students had a crush on him. Of course he had rejected every single one of these 'love confessions' - he got no time to waste on stupid teenage dramas, not when his grades, his future, was on the line.

Upon hearing that Leonard was from New York, Reinald then started to pay more attention to the American's attire. First off, it was rather worn out, and the blond didn't look older than Reinald himself... which made the Asian question how this boy flew here all alone. Like, what about his family? His parents?

As his eyes traveled downwards, that was when he noticed something strange poking out from under the boy's jacket and hoodie. One could only wonder why someone from the further north with seasonal changes would wear more clothing than Reinald himself, who hailed from a tropical country close to the equator, on such a nice spring morning. It wasn't that cold, at least that was what he thought. Unless he was hiding something... It would make sense for him to be armed with a bladed weapon of sorts - didn't he said he had beaten up a group of Paris gangsters trying to mug him just now, even with his seemingly innocent appearance and size? Reinald made a mental note to himself not to get on the wrong side of this guy.

If it wasn't for the letter tucked deep in his pocket, Reinald wouldn't have bothered to leave the haven of his home and come to this place full of foreboding danger. Well, Leonard didn't seem to give off any hint of hostility so far. Not that he had to, when Reinald did nothing but chatting politely like any nice tourists would have.

He returned Leonard's greeting with a curt nod. "I'm from Singapore," he supplied, chuckling at Leonard while trying to hide the increasing uneasiness he was feeling at how this boy kept staring at him. "You know, that 'little red dot situated at the end of the Malay Peninsula'," he recited in a mock-serious tone. "As defined in some tourist guidebooks."

He shrugged and took another swig of his coffee. Half of him wanted to just walk away before those blue eyes were starting to creep him out, but he had another idea. "Are you good with French? Maybe I can join you for a bit of sightseeing, if you don't mind."

He scratched the back of his head with his free hand. "Well... because as you can probably tell, the French language doesn't get along with me. Yeah."
4 Jan 2017 22:27 16 Feb 2017 18:48
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IN A BRITISH THEMED CAFE
COLLAB BETWEEN @Snagglepuss89 & @Aewin

Conrad stared at the woman for a long moment, as if the creature in front of him possessed two heads. Still, he managed to come to his senses and quickly move his breakfast from the middle of the table, giving her ample room to lay her stuff down. With a clear tone of relief he finally replied:

"Apologies, I thought I was going crazy for a moment. It's not every day you hear proper English in this city."

It would be obvious to any native of Britain that Conrad was not born there. It lacked the same authenticity that his breakfast did. The accent was close, and certainly well practiced, but carried just a bit of unnatural harshness on certain sounds. Still, he had obviously either been living there a long time or was very good at impersonating the accent.

He motioned the seat across from him after speaking, adding for emphasis:

"Sit, sit. I'm not expecting company or anything."

Lucia gratefully took the seat opposite, almost dropping the tray against the table in her haste. She wasn't sure whether to not be surprised to find an English speaking man in a British themed cafe or to be surprised to find someone with a somewhat recognizable accent in Paris on her first day in the city.

"I-I'm sorry if I'm i-intruding, I-I'll finish my tea and be out of your hair in a jiffy!" She took the teapot with shaky hands, pouring herself some tea. The familiar aroma released by the tea caused Lucia to breathe a sigh of relief, feeling her heart-rate go down slightly. She took the cup of tea in both her hands, her palms wrapped comfortably around the cup as the warmth seeped into her skin. "I-It's only been an hour s-since I arrived in this city a-and I'm already here d-drinking t-t-tea. I-it doesn't h-help the stereotype, does i-it?" She averted her eyes, praying that the man in front of her didn't mind the stuttering.

"M-my name is Lucia. Lucia E-Everett. I-It's nice to meet you."

Conrad chuckled in response to that, taking a few moments to look over her as she talks. As she poured her tea he sipped his, and took an extra long look at the envelope she was carrying. The one that was, as far as he could see, identical to his own. Still, he made no comment on it.

"I don't think all stereotypes are bad, it just means the tradition of good taste is still going strong."

He paused once more, with an appreciative sniff of the new aroma making it's way across the table.

"I think the French are finally starting to catch on, though. If we don't work to keep our advantage we might just be importing their tea and their wine before long."

With another sip for emphasis, he finally added:

"Still, no need to hurry. If you're going to be a stereotype in a foreign land on your first day then you may as well go all the way. It may be old-fashioned, but I prefer a nice, relaxed tea. It would be downright American to go rushing about this business."

Lucia let out a surprised laugh, one hand unwrapping itself from the cup to hide her mouth as she giggled. "Or it just m-means we're awfully predictable." Lucia added before taking a sip. It didn't exactly taste like what she was used to brewing at home, but the familiar aroma was comforting enough to soothe her turning stomach. The longer she sat with the cup of tea, the more she forgot about her past queasiness.

"I-I think I got the stereotype c-covered already," Lucia gestured towards her suitcase once more. It was brand new, the case shiny, but it was the design Lucia was pointing out. The maroon suitcase had multiple stickers of the Union Jack pasted over her suitcase. "T-this was the o-only thing in the shops available a-at the time." She added as an afterthought, before sipping her warm tea again.

"Hah! My luggage doesn't look much better. If I didn't love my country though, I wouldn't live in it. I've only been here the better part of a week myself. It's amazing, and a bit embarrassing, how quickly one can grow homesick."

Shaking his head slightly at that, Conrad proceeded to finish off the scone he had started earlier, before splitting the second one in half and fixing it up the same way as the first.

"I guess I'm being a bit rude though, Miss Everett. Conrad Richter, the pleasure's mine."

He extended his hand across the table for a shake after speaking, lifting his empty sleeve visibly with a small smile.

"I'd offer you a proper shake, but the other isn't exactly fit for purpose."

Lucia set the teacup down on the tray in front of her, the cup clicking against the small, minimally designed tea plate. Any comments she had died in her throat, as she awkwardly stared a moment too long at the sleeve. Realizing what she was doing, Lucia covered her mouth, muffling the surprised words as her eyes widened. She shook her head, cheeks reddening.

And in one breath, "I-I-I'm so sorry for staring! T-that was t-t-terribly r-rude of me! I-I didn't mean to make you u-uncomfortable!" Lucia inhaled deeply after speaking as if trying to calm herself down.

"I-I'm really sorry, M-Mister Richter, if y-you w-want me to g-go, I'll g-go." Surely she made him uncomfortable with her staring earlier. At least, that was what she believed, and she regretted it. The tea in front of her was long forgotten by now, and she stared down as she toyed with the loose thread of her skirt again.

Conrad's tea was forgotten as well, but he couldn't drink it at the moment even if he wanted to. He was stifling back laughter- with quite admirable success- as the woman in front of him stammered on. Finally, when Lucia quieted down again he added:

"We can't have this, can we?"

He began, almost stern, before taking the next bite of his scone.

"If you're going to represent the UK abroad we need to work on your stiff upper lip, it's the most British stereotype you could have missed."

Lucia paused her stuttering, looking up to finally make eye contact with the man in front of her in surprise. Did he not notice her staring? Either way, Lucia couldn't hide the confusion from her face. "Y-you're not a-angry?"

With Lucia, there was no such thing as a stiff upper lip. They've barely spent more than ten minutes together but Lucia had already felt a wide range of emotions in that short period of time. She felt too uncomfortable to take her cup of tea back into her hands, fearing it wasn't good manners on her part to carry on drinking as if nothing had happened. "I-I-I suppose I-I do need t-to work on i-it-"

"Angry...?"

He frowned thoughtfully, finishing half of his final scone before coming to his own conclusion.

"Oh, that the hand humor didn't cut the awkwardness any? Well... I guess I do have an odd sense of what funny is. Still, after the first decade or two, you get used to all sorts of reactions. I even had a man once insist that he shake the stump because greeting with the left hand was never proper."

He sighed with exasperation at the memory, unfortunately not making it up for the sake of a joke.

"I think you're a step above that so far, as little of a compliment as that is."

That was what he thought humor was!? Lucia gawked, barely catching her mouth from dropping from surprise. It wasn't every day that you would meet a handicapped person, especially one that was accepting of their condition to the point of using it as humor. The story Conrad was willing to share was even more peculiar. What sort of men does he meet?

Lucia brushed off the 'compliment', the bizarreness of the situation shifting her mood to one of confusion or curiosity. She wondered if that was the only strange story he had. "Y-you don't seem s-surprised b-by my reaction. I-If y-you don't mind t-telling, what is t-the oddest r-reaction you've e-ever gotten?" Part of her wondered whether the man missed having his arm, but that was probably not a very nice question to ask, especially since she only met the man very recently.

He sighed in response, clearly having an answer ready for this question.

"There was one Summer I was with my father in Wien for some business he had there. As I was exploring the city a Swedish woman stopped me on the side of the street, covered nearly head to toe in paint- Bohemian, you know the type- and asked to paint me."

He took a sip of his tea, the hint of a smile at the edge of his lips.

"Of course, I was flattered like any young man would be to have a woman's attention! However, it quickly became apparent that she had no interest in my charming good looks, but rather this:"

He held up the empty sleeve for emphasis.

"Apparently of all the hand stumps in Wien mine had become her muse. Of course I refused, but the damn woman followed me! First begging, and then offering me money! Once she got up to a thousand Schillings, well..."

He shrugged, as if that summed up the memory.

"Somewhere out there is a painting of my stump, and with my luck, it's part of some famous art exhibit by now."

After listening to Conrad's recount of a strange painter's reaction, Lucia almost felt better about her own dramatic reaction. It brought her some relief that she wasn't the worst he's had to experience, but she still didn't feel any less bad about staring as if she had never seen a stump before. Lucia's shoulders slumped slightly, as she let out a soft sigh to release her tensions.

Lucia reached out to touch the teacup, before deciding it was warm enough for her to finish. She took a delicate sip, before returning it back onto the china plate. "M-maybe s-some day there w-will be an a-art class dedicated t-to you." She thought to herself for a minute, before making a face. It didn't sound like a very pleasant thought, and Lucia didn't even want to consider what she would feel if she were in his position.

She poured herself another cup of tea once she was finished with the first one. She wanted to steer the conversation away from his arm, feeling she might be disrespectful if she continued. "S-so i-is this your first time v-visiting Paris?" Small talk, now that she was good with.

Conrad made much the same face she did, welcoming the change in subject as a break from unpleasant possibilities.

"Paris and France, I admit I-"

He lowered his voice somewhat, in an effort not to offend the patrons and servers around him.

"Never had much interest in the bloody country outside of the history books. Sometimes though life sends you a summons you can't ignore."

Raising his voice once more, he continued:

"And you, Mademoiselle? No offense meant, but you don't exactly seem... inclined towards adventure. Have you traveled much?"

"Y-you're right. I- I'm h-here for..." Lucia was unsure how to explain her reason for being in Paris. Would it really be believable to say she had been invited by a super-celebrity that was willing to grant her deepest desire? As she thought it through, she realized it sounded more like fantasy than reality. Her eyes moved to scan the envelope that she had tucked under her tray, just barely peeking out from the corner.

"I- um, I'm here t-to meet s-somebody i-important." It wasn't exactly a lie, but vague enough so she wouldn't have to figure out a way to explain the reason for her meeting.

He nodded as if understanding perfectly. Her age, the nervousness, an otherwise apparently shy girl in a foreign land. Under normal circumstances, they were the symptoms of a typical cause. With an almost mischievous smile he replied:

"You've come to visit a lover then.."

"No!" She didn't even think before crying out a little too loudly. When the patrons of the cafe turned to look in the direction of their table, Lucia sank down in her seat, almost as if she were trying to slide under the table away from their, and Conrad's line of vision. Her face was inflamed, and she gripped her skirt. She vaguely thought about how her reaction probably didn't help in her case, but she couldn't stop herself.

She waited till most of the patrons looked away, before speaking again. "I-I-I me-mean n-n-no- h-he- we h-never m-met a-and i-it's f-for busi-business! S-sort o-of- b-" Lucia then bit down on her lip as if to physically stop herself from digging her own grave. She was a stuttering mess, and Lucia wasn't even sure if he could understand her through all that mess.

He had expected a reaction but didn't have the opportunity to enjoy his own success. The shout, and particularly clutching her skirt afterwards was giving the wrong impression of what had just happened. With a nervous smile, he met the gazes of the other patrons and offered an awkward wave with his hand, as if to say: Don't misunderstand. Please.

"A-apologies, it seems my humor has missed its mark again."

He offered sheepishly, before trying to calm the girl down once more. At the very least no matter how this day ended up going, he could say it started interesting.

"I'm here for similar reasons, business dealings of a sort. With someone important."

Again with the humor? It felt more like teasing than good humor. She kept her face down, waiting until the blush on her face would calm down before building up the courage to look up at him again. "N-no it's o-okay, I-I over r-reacted a-again."

When Conrad shared his reason for being in Paris, she nodded slowly. "I-I h-hope your m-meeting goes well, t-then."

Conrad had at last finished the final piece of his scone as she waiting to calm down, though it had long since lost its warmth. He had probably enjoyed the exchange more than the woman in front of him, but it had been nice to indulge himself with some light conversation before the day's events were destined to turn serious.

"And yours, although truth be told I think should mine go well..."

Throughout the conversation, there had been a... strain in Conrad's face. The look of someone who was trying to remain attentive to the matter at hand, but was ultimately preoccupied with something unseen. For the first time, though, his gaze lightened entirely, and something that could only be described as peace overtook his features. It was, at most, a subtle change, but there all the same.

"A new chapter of my life will finally begin. Sometimes I can't tell if the thought makes me glad or anxious."

It took a few moment for Lucia to finally realize the change in the atmosphere. From a light, teasing atmosphere it had shifted to something different. She leaned back in her seat, thinking to herself. She felt that in some strange way, she could relate. She understood that if she got her wish, her life would change for the better - it was the only reason she was here, braving new land and people.

Quietly, she gave her input. "N-no matter what will happen, it'll a-always be f-for the best. E-e-even if it doesn't s-seem like it f-first."

He shook his head, the moment of peace having passed.

"If your philosophy helps you sleep at night then I won't try to convince you otherwise. My experience though has taught me that terrible things happen every day to all manner of people, and there is no reason behind it. Nature is cruel, and if there is a God, then he is even crueler for allowing it."

The reply was hard, but not filled with any sorrow or rage. He spoke more like a teacher, instructing his students.

"Still, there is no point at being angry at what is, fair or unfair. If misfortune strikes, you work around it. If you are unable to, you perish. Plenty of people live and die this way without ever finding their 'Best' to compensate for their losses."

Almost apologetically, he let the words hang in the air as he sipped the last of his tea.

"But, that makes me sound bitter, no? I've been graced with the chance to meet you, Mademoiselle, and have gotten to enjoy what could be an otherwise unpleasant day as a result. If what happens in your business does not turn out for the best, I hope you can make your own luck out of what hand fate chooses to deal you."

Conrad extended his hand once again, the earlier attempt at a shake having been lost in the awkwardness of the moment.

Lucia understood what he meant perfectly, and she felt her shoulders slump slightly as the conversation took a deep and meaningful turn. Lucia bit down on her lip, thinking deeply about what Conrad was saying. She wanted to debate further, try to reason with him and to see why he thought as such, but Lucia didn't feel like it was appropriate to question him, especially since they had just met.

"N-no, i-it makes you sound i-insightful!" Trying to assure him, Lucia then leaned forward to reach her hand to shake his outstretched one. "I-I'm n-not sure h-how the meeting will t-turn out, b-but even if i-it doesn't g-go well, a-at least I can say I t-tried?" She sounded unsure of herself. She felt a mixture of optimism and lack of confidence bubbling inside as she thought about the coming events.

He grasped her outstretched hand and gave it a firm, if weak shake. Conrad's thin frame apparently offered no illusions about his strength.

"The courage to make mistakes and the wisdom to learn from them. It doesn't matter how the meeting goes if you use it to succeed at your next venture."

Lucia nodded weakly, taking care to listen carefully to the sage advice. It seemed like a wise thing to follow; but would she really able to handle it should everything go so very wrong at the final hurdle? The sides of Lucia's lips curled downwards as she sat back down. The unpleasant thought didn't sit very well with her. Only time would tell how things would go, but she could only hope it would go well.

"I-I suppose I'll s-say the same to you. I wish y-you the best o-of luck, a-and I h-hope the next c-chapter in your l-life is a good one."

He threw back his head and laughed at that, although it sounded rather devoid of any actual enjoy. He tucked his face down envelope on the table behind his dictionary once more, before finally answering:

"I think if my meeting goes poorly then that next chapter probably won't ever come. All the more reason to enjoy the highlights of this one while it lasts."

Conrad made a motion as if reading a watch that wasn't actually on his hand, before adding:

"I still have time before my business is set to begin. Did you want a hand getting your luggage to its destination? Mind you I can only offer one, but you seemed to be struggling earlier."

Seeing as the remaining tea still in the teapot had already gone cold, Lucia finished what was left of the tea in her cup before dusting off her lap. "I-It's no bother! I w-wouldn't want to burden y-you." Her voice was surprisingly firm for someone so meek, and upon realising it she cleared her throat. "B-but I-I wouldn't mind y-you pointing the way t-towards the airport. I-I'm supposed to be w-waiting at a spot f-for an e-escort to w-where I need to g-go."

He cocked his head in response, looking at the luggage she carried in.

"The airport? It looks like you just came from there, didn't you?"

"H-huh? Oh-" She slid out from the booth. "I-I just landed a couple hours ago." She said as she lifted the tray long enough to grab her envelope from underneath. "I w-would find m-my way back b-but my phone has r-run out of battery."

He nodded, digging out his own phone in response.

"I haven't been in the city long enough to give directions but..."

After a moment of fiddling with it, he grabbed his dictionary and ripped the second-to-last page out of it, one that was always left blank, then proceeded to detail street directions leading from the tea house back to the airport.

"... If I'm not being lied to, this should get you there without too much trouble."

Sliding the paper over to her, he replaced his dictionary and phone once more. At the very bottom of the directions, a phone number was scrawled.

"I don't know how long I'll be in the city, but it doesn't hurt to have a contact when you're in a foreign land."

Lucia took the paper, peering down at the writing before looking up at Conrad with a grateful smile. "T-thank you!" With the paper in hand, she felt that she could make it back to the airport in time to find the escort to her destination. She made a mental note to keep the sheet safe so she could save his number once she had the opportunity to charge her phone.

Tucking the sheet of paper into her skirt pocket, Lucia pulled her carry-on bag over her shoulder, envelope and guide in her hand before she turned to face Conrad one more time. Her face was a little more relaxed compared to when they had first met, and she offered him a genuine smile. "Thank you f-for your h-help, a-and for giving me a p-place t-to sit." She repeated, her free hand curling over the handle of her suitcase from behind her. "I hope w-we can meet u-up like this again, i-if you'll still b-be in the city. I-it's nice t-to have a friend in an u-unfamiliar p-place."

"Likewise, we'll have to find a more.... authentic place next time. I still haven't decided if this one is charming or tacky. In the meantime though:"

He raised his now empty teacup to her.

"Cheers."
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Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

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Somewhere in Central Paris | April 14, 2012 (08:32 AM)

β™« Final Fantasy Type-0 HD OST - A Day Like any Other / Day of the Sun

`So he is from Asia then...?` Leonard contemplated as Rein mentioned he was from Singapore, smirking a bit in response to the clear joking tone that the guy was using to explain where he hailed from. While it did not prevent him from paying close attention to the young man as he had been, he liked that the fellow had a sense of humour. He nodded slightly in response, wondering if this was Rein's preferred greeting over a hand shake. Leonard actually tended to greet people with a casual hand wave instead of shaking hands, but he knew some people expected more formality.

In all honesty, Leonard was not educated enough to have been capable of pointing out Singapore on a map if he was asked to, or even the 'Malay Peninsula'; in fact, he had never even heard of the latter until just now, though he guessed that the guy was referring to Malaysia -- a place he had only heard of vaguely, and subsequently also would be incapable of pointing out. All he knew about some smaller Asian countries was that people there apparently had bad living conditions or something -- he could sort of relate to that, but had no idea if Singapore was one of those places. Nevertheless, he had at least gotten the answer as to where Rein was from. It was still a bit jarring hearing someone from Asia speak without the accent he was used to hearing Asians use if they were not native to English, and it was also weird hearing him seemingly mix accents around. He sort of wondered if all people in Singapore sounded like that, or if it was a result of Rein travelling around -- he travelled here, after all.

Leonard's initial thoughts upon seeing Rein for the first time were to assume he was from Asia -- it was only logical in the same way that the first thing you would think if you saw a French man would be to guess they were from France. He did know that Asian people immigrated a lot though (in all fairness, most ethnicities did), so he could have come from anywhere realistically until an answer was given. The accent - or lack thereof a specific one - had completely thrown off the conceptions Leonard could have about Rein's place of origin though, which resulted in his initial curiosity about where this guy was from. If Rein had sounded like what Leonard was used to hearing from Asians speaking English, he would not have even given any of this a second thought. That was not what happened though, so the whole thing got him curious, and now that he had an answer the way the fellow was talking actually seemed weirder -- Singapore must have been an odd place.

`Ah, I'm doin' it again, aren't I...?` Leonard thought to himself suddenly, moments before Rein continued talking to him.

Without even really thinking about it, Leonard had gone into what he sometimes jokingly called 'detective mode' -- staring at a complete stranger and analysing every tiny detail about them, both out of curiosity and also out of caution. Had Rein not started talking to him again at this point, Leonard probably would have apologized or something by saying it was a 'bad habit' or whatnot. This really would not have been a lie -- Leonard had admittedly picked up the habit of going into 'detective mode' a lot, to the point of sometimes spacing out and losing track of anything except what he was focused on. This was partially due to his dad drilling it into his head to find the truth through the details, so he had almost been raised to be a detective to some extent, though he was far from savvy about how detectives did things 'by the book'. The habit sometimes caused him to have people call him out for it during conversations, since it made him a bit socially awkward when you considered how street-smart he was. Not that Leonard thought he was inherently doing something wrong - his staring having been out of inquisition, not hostility - but at this point he could tell Rein was getting uncomfortable now that he was less focused on thinking over the details.

At this point, Leonard eased up on the staring a bit -- his glance became a lot less focused. He was still on his guard, but unless this guy's appearance was as misleading as Leonard's was then he doubted Rein would be able to cause him a problem if he tried anything. He did not seem hostile though, so Leonard was fairly relaxed -- all the staring before would not have seemed inherently aggressive anyway. Also, Leonard was very good at appearing casual even when he was ready for an attack, given his lifestyle. The fact that Rein was seemingly unarmed put him at a disadvantage technically, so Leonard had far less reason to be on edge then back home where anyone might pull a handgun out on you at any moment. Not that Leonard thought an unarmed person was incapable of being dangerous, since he was dangerous unarmed, but when compared to armed gangs a single unarmed person was a lot less to be concerned about generally speaking.

"Heh, honestly I'm not that great at it either..." he replied, admittedly having picked up only a small bit of the language from the manual he was given, "I can order food an' ask for directions somewhat, but not without checkin' my book first -- tawkin' fluently or somethin' ain't happenin'..."

Nevertheless, Leonard had a bit of time available to him. The information provided in his letter about the escort had explained that it would be provided at the appointed location at five o'clock PM. Leonard's phone was currently in his pocket and both his hands were full, but he assumed that there was still several hours until he needed to head back to the airport -- that was assuming he took the offer, given how he sort of thought a fancy escort could be a bit awkward for him, but he figured it was better than getting lost due to potential issues coming up from asking directions. He had charged his phone before leaving the hotel, but it could run out again during the journey. There was a map explaining how to get to the location on the other hand, so he had not exactly decided yet -- he really needed to sooner than later.

"I've got a li'l bit'a time on my hands, so if ya think I can help out then I'm cool with it." he continued shortly afterwards, taking only a moment to think that over and not particularly giving Rein a chance to say anything in response prior. There would not inherently have been enough of a pause for him to accidentally interrupt Rein unless the guy literally did not even take a moment to think the initial answer over.

"Ah, yeah..." Leonard quickly added, "Sorry if I was starin' earlier -- habit'a mine..."

There were probably people who would say that Leonard's tendency to be really straightforward and direct with people was off-putting, but to those who were constantly dealing with the toxicity of people who hid behind masks, his honesty - even if it was honestly to a fault - could actually be extremely refreshing. Just the ability to talk with someone who never bullshitted with people and just said exactly what he was thinking. Dishonesty - when without any sort of truly good reason - was one of the worst traits a person could have, in his eyes.
~
NPCs
British Themed CafΓ© | April 14, 2012 (08:34 AM)

β™« 10.000 Bullets (Tsukiyo ni Saraba) OST - Joni Scott Club

"She's a bit late... isn't she, Boss?" asked the female barista who had served Lucia previously.

"Isn't she always?" the middle-aged man who had been called 'Boss' replied, smirking as he read his newspaper, "I swear, that girl... If she wasn't so bloody good at what she did, that would've gotten her fired ages ago..." he continued -- his attempts at mimicking the British accent being slightly better than his workers, though not by much.

Meanwhile, a short distance away from the cafΓ©...

"Oh crap! Oh crap! Oh crap, oh crap, oh crap!" a young woman said as she was running down the street, doing her best not to run anyone over on the way as she moved like a speeding bullet, "I woke up late again!" she flailed, moving a little faster. Her speed was amazing considering she was running in heels, even if they were fairly short heels -- an inch or something. Her balance must have been phenomenal.

Arriving at the cafΓ© soon afterwards, her dash came to an almost instant stop. Had she been a cartoon character or something, this probably would have been the moment where a very loud skidding sound had been made for exaggeration at how abrupt and sudden her stop had been. Quickly, she rushed over to the door and a loud jingle could be heard as it opened hastily.

"I made it, Boss!" the young woman spoke, clearly addressing the middle-aged man and seemingly exhausted as she was leaning down -- buffing her lungs out, her entire upper body was slouched significantly forward and her knees bent slightly as she held the doorframe with one hand in order to keep herself balanced.

The weird young woman who just entered the cafΓ© looked like she was in her early twenties at most. She had pale - though not too pale - skin and large expressional eyes that were light brown, and long hair that was a honey chestnut brown colour -- tied up in a ponytail using a large scrunchy. Some bangs moved down in front of her forehead in a few places, and she had sidebands framing her face that were wavy and long enough to easily go down to her chest. She was wearing a tucked in white blouse (woman's dress shirt), black leggings, and black heels that were not excessively high. A dark blue-ish purple jacket was worn over her shirt, which was open and had no buttons, and a similar coloured skirt that stopped a fair bit before her knees was worn as well. No other noticeable articles of clothing or accessories were worn, apart from her black purse being carried in her free hand and currently draping down almost against the ground.

"Speak of the devil." the middle-aged man said, chuckling a bit, "Paula! You can't afford to be so late with your new job, you know!" he continued, the way he spoke almost sounding like an uncle scolding his niece, "Our little girl's going to work for 'The Methuselah of Paris', after all. Isn't it about time you started getting to places on time?"

Out of everyone in the cafΓ©, those who seemed to be regulars did not seem even slightly surprised by the abrupt entrance of this 'Paula' girl, nor the words spoken by the man known as 'Boss'. A couple of them were even chuckling to themselves about the whole situation. The whole back and forth seemed to be pretty much an everyday event to some extent, apart from the mention of 'The Methuselah of Paris'. Though perhaps not as commonly heard of as 'Monsieur Bonaparte', the name was known within circles who followed urban legends as a nickname for Lucifer Van Bonaparte -- since the enigmatic celebrity had seemingly not aged a day in over two decades, at least according to the few who had seen him, myths and jokes had spread around that he was an immortal vampire who swooped in and captured virgin maidens as his prey.

"It's n~" Paula started trying to say, but she was still really exhausted, so she had to take another breath, "... It's not very polite to call a nice girl like me 'the devil', you know!" she said, a friendly expression on her face as she smirked up at 'Boss' and winked, sticking her tongue out at him slightly.

"All the more reason you should rethink leaving us, right?" the middle-aged man said, "He might drink your blood if you're not careful! I heard some girls just like you went missing recently!" he continued, though the tone in his voice was clearly joking to anyone who was paying attention -- he was teasing her, and no apparent behaviour coming from him implied he was serious about anything terrible like that happening lately.

"Oh, very funny!" she said with the same friendly expression on her face, "You're such a jerk, you know that? How do you stay in business?" she said, smirking.

By this point, there was something that Conrad and Lucia might have noticed about Paula, or at the very least they should have noticed it -- her British accent was noticeably better than everyone else who worked there, including the man called 'Boss'. There was the occasional moment where the fact that she was born in France became apparent, but she spoke English perfectly enough like a British girl that one could easily have believed she had at least one British parent, and her physical features looked as such as well -- she clearly stood out a bit from a regular Parisian.

"That's a good question, isn't it?" the middle-aged man replied, laughing a bit afterwards. Paula laughed a little in response to, and the female barista did at the same time. A couple of the regulars of the cafΓ© seemed to be chuckling a bit more too due to all of this. For some reason, the moment this girl had entered the building the entire atmosphere of the place got a whole lot warmer, "Seriously though, this is a big opportunity -- don't blow it, okay girl?" the man said, "Also, once you seduce the bloke and make a fortune, put in a good word for me, ey?" he continued, smirking again.

"Stop teasing me!" Paula called out, flailing for a moment.
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Pudding Queen Of Yaoi

Member Seen 15 Mar 2017 10:15

✿Karlita Romaro Sanrita✿

Suave Hotel
Persona 3 - This Mysterious Feeling


Karlita was sound asleep. Face pressed against the hotel bed sheet, pearl white, soft as sheep wool. Hand clasped against an empty bottle of wine, Karlita was rudely awoken by the powerful sun-rays beaming through the large glass windows adjacent to the bed. Unintelligible groans could be heard from the face-down mess. "Errrgh..." Using her free hand, Karlita began to grab around the bed as if looking for something. Slowly rolling to her side away from the sun, Karlita blinked and rubbed her eyes, letting go of the wine bottle. The bottle bounced and rolled off the side of the bed, smacking the ground with a minor thud. Taking in the appearance of the room Karlita couldn't help but comment on how it looked like a crime scene. "Goodness, what on earth did I do last night? Well, whatever happened, the hotel can fix it, afterall, that's what an all expense paid trip is for! Hehehe!" Karlita couldn't help but giggle, kicking her legs in excitement as she fist pumped the air. It then dawned on her, it was extremely important too, she had to be somewhere. Rolling out the hotel bed, she left adjusted her nightgown so it was no longer crinkled and walked to the bathroom to freshen up. All the while her mind wondered to yesterday and the events that led up to the present.

The Previous Day - 10am - Karlitas' Home
Persona 3 - Afternoon Break

"Oh gawsh, I'm already running behind schedule, I knew I shouldn't have been up all night but I did it anyway! Why god damn it why!?" Karlita was in a flurry, she had barely started packing, she'd spent the entirety of the night concocting more medicine and attempting to prepare a fragrance. Shaking her head, Karlita sighed and shrugged her shoulders. There was no time to waste, Karlita began packing for the trip to Paris. The trip flight itself was barely even two hours from Amsterdam so by leaving in the morning she could spend the entirety of the day sightseeing. Karlita was determined to milk this trip for all it was worth. Packing her bags she included some of her favorite dresses, work notes and the white work coat Karlita always wears when working, you never know when the opportunity might arise, even when on a expensive vacation. After folding her clothes, she placed them neatly in her suitcase. Zipping the suitcase tightly closed she walked over to a framed photo of her mother. Kissing the index and middle fingers of her right hand, she placed them on the photo frame. "Goodbye, I'm sure you'll miss me, but I'll bring you back an amazing souvenir."

The flight was comfortable, riding in first class wasn't an everyday experience for Karlita so she soaked up the luxury as best she could, drinking fine wines and scoping through the luxury magazines they lay out for everyone to window-shop with. "As to be expected, as if anybody would buy this junk, let alone has the money too, but I supposed if your life as jet setter was just traveling the world, it'd be a normality for you." Placing the magazine down, Karlita spent the rest of her time attempting to learn French and English using two dictionaries she purchased at a travel Kiosk before the plane arrived for Paris. 'Spanish to English' and 'Spanish to French', without these two books, Karlita would most likely be relying on nods, head shakes and pointing.

What an amazing city, it was buzzing with life and culture. The French culture is something completely foreign to Karlita, wondrously foreign too, she couldn't wait to explore every inch of it. All she knew of the city was that it's a city of love. Perhaps today, Karlita could find the lover of her dreams. Tall, handsome, muscular... As her mind ogled into fantasy Karlita was quickly brought back to Earth with the realization that she was being approached by a tall man, a man whom was not muscular nor attractive. He claimed to be from a hotel. The man was evidently dispatched to pick up Karlita upon her arrival in Paris. Karlita knew the hotel she had booked for the evening was good but not this good. Confirming her identity with the man, they drove to accommodation in a shiny black car. Not a fan of cars Karlita didn't recognize the model but she would call it 'retro'. It only took a few moments to check-in, keys in hand Karlita took the elevator to her room, suitcase in hand as the small wheels underneath struggled to keep up with her fast pace. Opening up her suitcase she made sure to look over the letter once more. Just to reconfirm her special date for tomorrow, but now was the time for sight seeing! Extremely excited to explore, she took her velvet purse and set out a self run tour of the city. Before deciding where to start, she flipped through a few magazines in the front lobby of the hotel, gazing at the hit tourist spots.

The Current Day - April 14, 2012 - 7:42am - Suave Hotel

Finishing up her make up, she came to the realization that she really didn't have a good memory of yesterdays' events. It must have been the wine, clearly she had too much last night and wound up forgetting everything that happened.
"Hmm.. After that, I don't really remember exactly what happened. Goodness Karlita, you need to lay off the wine!" Looking into the mirror she giggled to herself responding to her monologue. "Nah, it's such a refined hobby, I could never!" Finishing up her morning routine, Karlita walked out of the bathroom, treading upon tourism magazine spread out along the floor. Leaning down to pick it up, Karlita wondered if there was anytime to do a little more sight seeing. The letter didn't state a specific time, just that she needed to be there, today. Thinking there was a loophole in her special date Karlita decided to flick through the magazine for somewhere interesting to visit. Nothing really stood out to her, in all honesty she was rather discouraged by this, there was just dusty museums, old churches and boring fountains. Unless these fountains were like the ones in Rome - good for wish making in the love department - Karlita was not interested. There were the catacombs too but honestly, who would get excited over something like human bones, talk about creepy. But one single attraction stood out to her for the day, what else could it be but a garden?
"Luxembourg Palace hmmm? Sounds interesting. Better than some dusty old church. Maybe they have some beautiful flowers that I can pocket for work hehe~"

Enticed with the idea, Karlita set off from the hotel front to find these 'Luxembourg Gardens'.
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Shadow007 Still a massive dork.

Member Seen 21 Apr 2017 20:39


~Itzal Albescu Fuji~

British Themed Cafe


Being a chef, the first thing that Itzal did once he got off the plane was to go try the outstanding assortment of dishes that Paris had to offer in their finest restaurants and cafes. He thought to himself almost wistfully that if there was indeed a heaven for cuisine, Paris... No, France in general was definitely the destination for the food lover to visit. By the time he visited the so called "British Themed" Cafe, it had to have been at least the fifteenth... Or was it perhaps sixteenth cafe that he had visited in Central Paris in the span of a day. He supposed that he just couldn't help himself, he was like a young child in a candy shop and he had never felt so inspired in his element, considering he had at least thirty recipes that he was going to try making himself when he had the time. You could say that he was so entranced by all of this, he didn't even pay attention to those taking a second glance at the young man as he scribbled down names of entrees and deserts in his notebook. Not that he wasn't used to people looking over him oddly, not many people had white hair or ruby colored eyes like himself, it was more than likely that he stuck out like a sore thumb as he giddily asked the chefs about their recipes and styles of cooking in their own language. He was obviously a foreigner, that was for certain and most of the French public was surprised to hear their beloved language escape pass his delicate lips without being butchered in the slightest.

By the time he had reached his destination of the British themed cafe, Itzal was none less the eager to try to find one of the Sous-Chefs or one of the pÒtissière as he opened the door slowly to take in the different aromas of baked goods, tea, and coffee that immediately started to flood his nostrils. He tried to hide the smirk that was dancing on his lips as he entered in hopes that he wouldn't be stared or pointed at, but he just couldn't help himself... This was truly exciting for him. His smirk faded slightly when he came to realize that he actually didn't know very much about English cuisine. He flushed slightly as he pulled out his reading glasses and his notebook, he'd definitely have to do some studying while he was in here. He quickly went up to the first counter as he started glancing at the names off the different pastries, writing down notes about each specific pastry, whether it be the type of crust or filling it had or what style the pastry was created in.

While he was scribbling away, he started to listen to a couple of people chatting at a table. From what he could make out, they were speaking English, not that he was fluent in it though, he knew a few passing phrases to break the ice, but that was about it. What managed to catch his attention was the envelopes that they were holding, which he managed to guess that's what they were conversing about. He frowned slightly, touching the pocket of his sweatshirt lightly thinking about the own envelope he had received, after all the reason he even decided to visit Paris was because of this envelope. He adjusted his glasses before he returned to his work, he didn't want to think about the envelope right now, that could come later for when the time arrived. He blinked, that was today wasn't it? He thought as he glanced over at the clock, wondering if he should head to the address that the letter had specified to go to, after all... It would be rude to decline the offer considering that he had gotten the ticket. He nibbled his lip as he pulled the envelope out of his pocket and glanced around nervously, he felt he had put himself into a horrid moral conundrum... All over an envelope from a man that he had never met and knew VERY little about. He started pacing around to get rid of his jitters, "What do I do... What do I do...?" He muttered to himself, still clutching onto the envelope with anxious tightness.

Itzal swallowed heavily as his felt his palms start to sweat and his legs tremble, he almost looked like he might pass out to the wandering bystander, "Oh my Goodness..." He whispered, glancing at the clock with an ominous feeling in his chest. "What to do...?"

As he was thinking about this a young woman around his age entered the cafe, in quite an odd fashion. Itzal blinked slightly as he backed away from the counter, not that the young woman even noticed him as she dashed over to her comrades, going on and on about something in English that didn't really catch his attention until she uttered the phrase, "The Devil." That caused him to swallow heavily and start to tremble again, it seemed that this woman knew something about the sender of his letter. He nibbled his lip again as he thought about what he should do, approach the oddly cheerful woman or not was the question. He rather not because she seemed to be way out there in terms of being social and he really did not want to draw attention to himself. Especially when he'd probably butcher saying something in English, leading him to decide to just wait and see what may happen as he cursed himself for being a coward.
9 Jan 2017 14:53 30 Mar 2017 16:28
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Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

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Outdoor Setting of a CafΓ© in Central Paris | April 14, 2012 (08:03 AM)

β™« 10.000 Bullets (Tsukiyo ni Saraba) OST - Target

In the seating area outside of the cafΓ© Olivia was exiting, a man in his late twenties was reading the newspaper as he was seated at one of the tables, a slightly more than half-full cup of tea in front of him as he was looking through the stock market in the business section of the paper. Adjusting his glasses for a moment, he lifted the cup by its handle again and took another sip of the tea, placing the cup back down on the table afterwards. The man shook his head slowly, seeming like he had a bit on his mind -- perhaps a result of the fact that he was so caught up with his job that he had a difficult time relaxing.

Suddenly, the teacup shattered into pieces that were sent flying, causing the man to jump up from his chair in a startled manner, dropping the newspaper as the seat hit the ground behind him.

Turning around in multiple directions, as if frantically searching for a possible cause, the man noticed a girl sitting on a chair at another eatery on the opposite site of street, holding a slingshot. She looked around twelve years old or so, seemingly a little under five feet tall, and was fairly lean from the look of her. Her skin was the sort of light colour one would expect from a Caucasian, while her long - roughly halfway down her back, and generally a bit uneven; even slightly messy - Tosca rose (sort of a rose-tinted light maroon) coloured hair was a bit less conventional, uneven bangs framing down her forehead and then longer ones down the sides of her face. She had a deadpan expression on her face that looked bored, and her emerald green eyes stood out quite a bit due to how expressional and inquisitive they appeared. The stick of a lollipop was hanging out of her mouth. Her outfit consisted of a pair of sneakers, denim jeans, and a black t-shirt. Over the top half of her outfit, she was wearing a grey raincoat with the hood up despite the relatively pleasant weather.

"Hey, you brat! What do you think you're doing!?" the man yelled out at the girl, who seemingly made no reaction at all.

"Coll," a stern voice spoke out suddenly with an accent that sounded vaguely Irish even though he was speaking in French, "are you causing trouble again...?" continued the man who walked out of the building with a bag of takeaway.

The man who approached the girl appeared in his early-mid thirties, and was tall - definitely slightly over six feet - in comparison to the girl, with a slightly lean build that still looked very athletic and had broad shoulders. To be exact, he would have looked fairly muscular if not for the large black trench coat that covered nearly his entire outfit due to it reaching down almost to his feet, with the collar pulled up and covering most of his neck as well. The trench coat was left open, allowing his black pants, black belt with a silver buckle, and untucked dress shirt that was a very dark grey - virtually indistinguishable from black - to be clearly visible, and he was wearing black shoes. The collar button of the shirt and the one below it were both left undone. The man himself had light skin like the girl, also appearing like a Caucasian. His piercing grey-blue eyes appeared calm and focused, but were clearly looking at the girl in a scolding manner, at least to anyone who could see them from behind the pair of rimless sunglasses that he was wearing, which had small and completely round black lenses -- they looked more like black spectacles than regular sunglasses. His short hair was medium brown and slicked back for the most part, while it had a little extra volume at the top since the back part mostly stuck out behind his head slightly while the front had a more unkempt look to it -- bangs spiked out in a variety of directions.

"Who the hell are you!? Is this brat your kid!?" the man said out loud as he approached the two.

The stranger with the sunglasses turned to face the other man and placed the takeaway bag down on the table next to the girl, as well as the suitcase in his other hand. He placed one hand up behind his head and scratched his hair slightly with a somewhat sheepish look on his face.

"Oh, my name is Lawrence Cody. I'm a journalist from Ireland, and this is my daughter Colleen." he stated, turning to the girl, "Coll, apologize to the man!" Lawrence scolded.

"Sorry..." Colleen said half-heartedly, rolling her eyes slowly before she turned around and slumped down on the chair, taking out her portion of the takeaway from the bag and starting to eat.

"You need to keep that brat under control! Take the damn slingshot from her or something!" the man said.

"Yeah, sorry about that..." Lawrence replied, scratching his head again, "She can be a real monster sometimes..." he continued, moving his hand back down and taking a moment to adjust his sunglasses slightly with one finger, "Coll, give it to me." he ordered without raising his voice, causing Colleen to nonchalantly place it out on the table without saying anything or looking back at either of them, as she kept munching away at her burger.

Lawrence took a moment to open up his suitcase, turning to the man as he did, "So, what did she break...?" he asked.

"Huh...!? Oh, a teacup -- messed up my newspaper too!" the man replied.

"I see..." Lawrence said calmly, pulling out a noticeable amount of money. It would have easily been enough for the man to replace his newspaper, pay for a replacement cup for the cafΓ©, and even buy the most expensive meal on their menu, with a reasonable bit left to spare after all of that, "This should do it, right...?" he stated.

As Lawrence handed the money over, the man was more shocked than anything, actually having to stop his jaw from dropping. "Sure! ... Just make sure it doesn't happen again!" he said, getting a bit distracted by the money and almost forgetting how angry he was for a moment.

"Of course." Lawrence said with a smile, and then he rummaged through the suitcase again, "Oh yeah, one more thing..."

"Yeah, what?" the man replied.

"Perhaps you can help me with something -- you see, I'm looking for someone, and all I know is they're in Paris..." Lawrence said, pulling out a piece of paper and showing the man a photo of the person in question, "If you happen to see him, would you call the number on the back? I'm offering a reward for any leads..." he stated.

"A reward? Yeah, alright. If I find out anything, I'll call you." the man said.

"I appreciate it. That'd be great." Lawrence replied, his eyes turning slightly as he noticed Olivia, "Oh, excuse me miss!" he said with a calm look on his face, "Could I have a moment of your time?"

11 Jan 2017 22:29
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Melo Captain* Melo

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Location: Outdoor setting of a cafΓ© in central Paris


As the Parisian streets met with Olivia’s feet, she was greeted with the sound of a shattering teacup. Olivia momentarily turned to the source and the then to the cause of this event. She had no intention of intervening, but she kept watching for a bit as the man looked like he was about to attack the child. Luckily the situation was quickly aided by what seemed to be the young girl’s father.

Noticing the peaceful resolution of the situation, Olivia turned around to return to her plan, until the father of the girl asked for her attention. If she had heard him correctly, his name was Lawrence. He had a slight foreign accent that she could not exactly place, though his French was definitely understandable. Olivia was quite tall for a woman, but quite easily dwarfed by this man. Something about his build, length and attire made him look somewhat intimidating, but that didn’t come across in his behaviour.

She looked at the man with a kind smile on her face, and answered in her fluent French. β€œYes, what can I help you with?” She figured he would likely ask her the same thing as the man. As a doctor, helping other people was somewhat of a calling for her regardless of whether ir was related to health or not.

12 Jan 2017 5:08 12 Jan 2017 5:13
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Heap241 The Inquisitive Improvisationist

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Tatiana Adelbert


Location: Budapest, Hungary, train ride to Paris Date: April 13th, 2012 Time: 7:00pm


The train moved swiftly as it left it's station in Budapest heading towards Munich, Germany. The floor lightly rumbled and the seats vibrated with movement as the progression forward commenced. The sun was still up though it was setting over the mid-spring sky giving the sky a gentle purple and red haze.

In the distance beyond trees and between two hills were the peeking tops of an old cathedral, it's lights coming to life as the train began to pass it. "Ferko, My Love, Look in the distance, there is..." Her voice trailed off as her hand instinctively wondered into the seat next to hers in search of her late husbands warm hand to grasp, finding her finger tips only touching the velvety seat cushion instead. She raised her right hand to her lips to stifle them leaving a single tear to graze her cheek, finding the light wrinkles that barely represented themselves on her face and flowing with them like a stream. A single drop to remind her of her love for him.

Tatiana pulled a hand up to her inner chest pocket of her soft, lavender, knee length jacket and gently rang a finger along the edges of the envelope she had received. As if in a moment her thoughts drifted to when the letter had arrive. On the first of the year as she began her daily ritual with walking to the post to gather her mail she found that among greeting cards and well wishes into the new year was this single envelope, written on seemingly antiqued paper in exquisite penmanship. While on first receiving it she immediately thought it was a mistake and was not meant for her, upon reading it's too address she found her name, neatly written in an elegant calligraphy.

She hurried home and with the sound of her front door closing she opened the envelope, finding the most curious note inside. Through a quick read she dropped the envelope and letter on the ground, spilling the envelopes remaining contents on the floor. Tatiana quickly and instinctively dropped down to begin picking them up when she found the train tickets, a pamphlet for the many architecturally genius buildings of Paris and a tarot card. At the sight of these additional items her curiosity had been intrigued again and without further adieu she reread the letter.

The letter frightened her some as she was unsure of how someone she had never met and only vaguely heard of knew so much about her, including her preference to travel by train rather then plane. She repackaged all the items, placing them in a drawer and continuing to go about her day. She prepared herself for the florists shop and went on with her day.

Through the passing weeks she thought of the letter, occasionally taking it out to read over once more, then continuing on with her day. One morning she began her routine then stopped at the front door, turned around and pulled the letter out again. The growing thoughts in her mind of the monotonic routine she has been stuck in for years beginning to consume and depress her. Her decision had finally been made, she would go.

A soft touch on her shoulder woke her from a deep sleep. The right side of her face was chilled as it had been resting on the window for the duration of the train ride. She didn't understand how she'd fallen asleep or why her dreams consisted of only her letter and the decision she made but it was too late now to change her mind. Tatiana rose from her seat and clutched the leather grips of her mauve carpet bag before smiling at the attendant and making her way off the train to the Munich station where she would catch the connecting train to Paris. This train she caught quickly and as it was late, her eyes once again quickly closed, her head leaned against the window, this time a dreamless slumber.



Location: Paris, France, Paris Gare de Lyon Train Station Date: April 14th, 2012 Time: 7:00AM


Tatiana's eyes opened with the steady decrease in speed as the train approached the station. Though her rest wasn't quite as comfortable as she was used to, her eyes and mind her refreshed and ready for the day ahead of her. She clutched the handles of her bag and watch from the window as they pulled into the Paris Gare de Lyon Station. The large clock tower glimmering above them, the vines and sculptures that surrounded the building promising tales of adventure, love and drama with each carved stone and engraved arch. The train hind finally concluded it's trip into the city and Tatiana was once again in a city she adored in her youth, having been her many times while travelling Europe with Ferko.

The elder but not old woman exited the train, greeted by the concrete stones that made up the ground and the early morning light glowing through the long windows that glimmered as large slits in the angled roof. Though early still, the train station was bustling with people entering and exiting trains returning from or beginning new journeys and adventures as Tatiana was. With the crowd she moved her way through the station and out the door to the nearest bus stop. If she remembered correctly she was close to the Notre Dame.

The bus just as she had remembered it would showed up as if on queue, opening it's doors, letting out a trove of people while allowing more to enter it's welcoming doors. Tatiana slipped some Euros into the coin slot when out came a small ticket no longer then 3cm wide and 6cm long, on one side of the ticket was a small bus icon with the bus number, date and time while on the other was a single black line running directly down it's center.

After a few stops the bus opened it's doors by the entrance of the great cathedral. It was early yet so it's doors were still closed to tourists and visitors. This was no matter as Tatiana's first stop would be a cafΓ©. On the south side of the fantastic building was a walk way for cyclists and walking individuals who who wished to cross the river. Tatiana made her way in this direction, stopping in front of the building to give it a small curtsey saying, "JΓ³, hogy ΓΊjra lΓ‘tlak, kedves barΓ‘tom, a Notre Dame. (It is good to see you again my dear friend, Notre Dame.) before she continued on her way walking slowly to take in the early morning light reflecting off the stream of water that ran below her. Ferries and fishing boats had already long begun their day. Tatiana smiled and waved at a small boat heading under the bridge when it's sailor removed his hat and swung it in the air in a wave in return. Her excitement began to escalate as she continued her walk across the bridge.

Just a small ways down the road from the bridge was a small cafΓ© named Aux Arts Etc... Cafe Galerie d'art. It's walls were lined with paintings done by local artists that were selected to put on display. The beauty and raw talent excited the woman even more, drawing her towards the counter were the smell of fresh coffee and warm biscuits enveloped the room. Tatiana ordered a glass of fresh jasmine green tea with a small croissant then sat next to the large windows. She knew some French from her travels but, was much better at speaking and reading English even with her thick Hungarian accent. Outside the windows were some street stalls set up displaying various different pieces of art mostly all locally painted and printed. Behind the stalls were trees where peeking through the branches were the grand arches and beauty of the Notre Dame herself.

Tatiana sat a while, sipping her tea and watching people pass. Couples clasped together, a woman walking several dogs at once, a beggar being shooed off by a passing officer, the city was coming alive as the time passed. With her tea now gone and her croissant half finished she rose from her place, took one more tour around the room to gaze at the lovely paintings then left the building, making her way towards the Square RenΓ© Viviani a small park just a block or so away from where she currently was.

The large hedges of the park rose around it, it's vine arches just beginning to bud and the other new buds surrounding the interior of the hedge fence showing healthy signs of growth. A gathering of pidgins huddled around each other, picking at the ground for food while avoiding the springing fountain that decorated the center of the Square RenΓ© Viviani. Tatiana sat on a stone bench and broke apart the remainder of her bread, tossing it gentle on the ground which sent the pidgins in a frenzy trying to get at it. The hooting and gurgling of the pidgins created a smile on the woman's face that was so wide and rich she wondered how long it had been since she had smiled quite this much.

Her bread now gone and the pidgins never satisfied, Tatiana rose again and walked towards the book store in the plaza ahead of her. The Shakespeare & Company side was made of iron and was lifted high up on the building to be seen from far off. The entrance to the building was small but upon entering the massive amount of books about the room was nearly overwhelming. Books were stacked from floor to ceiling, covering shelves and lining the edges of the staircase leading the the second floor. The entrance opened up to a staircase on the right and a small hallway on the left that lead to a somewhat larger room also filled and stuffed with books. The smell of both old and new parchment mixed in the air creating a cosy atmosphere with a wealth of knowledge to be learned on every corner.

Tatiana picked up a book from on of the stacks and sat down near a shelf of books labelled 'Drama'. Her seat was a large armchair that seemed to envelope her in it's arms. She glanced at the front of the book and realized what she picked up was a complete collection of Grimm's Fairy tales, translated in English with illustrations. Tatiana smiled small to herself as she began to read the pages filling up her mind with the original story of Hansel and Gretel and Cinderella. She spent some time in this position, reading and forgetting the world when at a chance glance she looked up and realized it was nearly 10:00am. Tatiana closed the book gently and proceeded to pay for it, placing it in her carpet bag before leaving the little shop.

The sun was now much higher in the sky as she once again crossed the bridge towards the ever standing beacon of the Notre Dame. The doors were now open and outside of it was a performer, dressed as the Hunchback of Notre Dame impressing tourists and pleasing crowds. Tatiana herself stood by momentarily watching the costumed actor go about his rehearsed script. She gave him a 5 Euro bill before stepping back a few paces, sitting on a stone bench and pulling out a small book with blank pages. "Okay, Taya." she whispered to herself pulling out a pen and beginning her almost calculated drawing of the Notre Dame. The lines were straight with no ruler the angles perfect with no assistance. The bells of Notre Damn rang and echoed of the courtyard in the chime of 10:00 causing the birds to take flight from the roof, parading overhead and a friendly spring as they flew off into the distance.
12 Jan 2017 7:34 26 Jan 2017 22:23
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Shoryu Magami 𝔗π”₯𝔒 π”Šπ”²π”žπ”―π”‘π”¦π”žπ”« 𝔬𝔣 𝔄𝔰𝔠𝔒𝔫𝔰𝔦𝔬𝔫

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Outdoor Setting of a CafΓ© in Central Paris | April 14, 2012 (08:11 AM)

β™« 10.000 Bullets (Tsukiyo ni Saraba) OST - Target

The expression on Lawrence's face was relaxed and friendly as Olivia responded back to him, clearly showing she was glad to be of assistance. From what he could make of her appearance, she seemed to be some sort of scientist or doctor -- she had fairly basic clothing consistent of a blouse and jeans, but it was the white coat worn over them that immediately stuck out in his mind as someone who worked in one of those professions. She had a kind expression on her face too, so she came across as quite approachable. This was not so different to the way Lawrence himself came across, even if his physical appearance was a bit more threatening than the personality he presented to others.

"I'm probably repeating myself, since you might have heard me just now, but my name is Lawrence Cody and I'm a travelling journalist." he said, repeating a greeting somewhat similar to the one he had spoken to the man before and giving the impression that he had to introduce himself like this quite a lot during his work.

Olivia's assumption about what the tall stranger wanted was completely accurate. Without really giving any further delay, Lawrence held his hand out and offered Olivia a copy of the same photograph he had previously handed the man. It depicted a young man who was likely in his early twenties, and - exactly as Lawrence had told the other person he handed the photo to - there was also a contact phone number on the back of the photograph, alongside the words 'Lawrence Cody (Freelance Journalist)'. The picture itself was clear and very easy to see the details of, meaning that if Olivia encountered the young man shown she would have no difficulty recognizing him as the person Lawrence was looking for.

"As I just mentioned before, I'm looking for the person in this photograph. I'm quite certain they are somewhere in Paris right now, but this city is huge..." Lawrence explained, speaking as though he tended to be very professional and work-focused most of the time, more or less repeating what he had said previously, "If you find any information, would you call the number on the back there? I'm offering compensation to anyone who can assist us."

Lawrence had found throughout his career that networking across a city for leads like this had usually payed off much better than simply searching on his own with his daughter. He had enough money to pay those who actually did provide him with some sort of viable lead regarding where the young man in the photograph was located, so it was mostly a matter of time and patience. At the same time, he would continue his own scouting alongside his daughter. Granted, it would have been a lot easier for him if someone he showed the picture to had encountered the target already.

While the discussion was going on, Colleen was still enjoying her burger, occasionally shifting her emerald eyes in the general direction of her father and the young woman he was talking to. At this point, she was mostly just minding her own business, but she made sure to listen to the conversation to an extent.
13 Jan 2017 20:16
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Aewin The Ultimate Blobfish

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IN A BRITISH THEMED CAFE, MAKING HER WAY OUT.
"F-for now, I s-suppose i-it shall do." Lucia wasn't very picky, she wasn't sure whether she would end up finding another cafe that would remind her of her home if she ever felt homesick. Sure, the tea could do with some work, but she wasn't one to complain. Lucia pulled her suitcase close to her body, taking another look at the directions Conrad had written out for her. She flashed another grateful smile towards her companion, before taking a step back. If Lucia had taken a step back a moment earlier, she would have most certainly crashed into a running woman dressed in blue running into the cafe.

For a moment, Lucia was distracted by the sudden... loudness. Still rooted in her spot, she couldn't help but listen to an excitable young lady get teased mercilessly by the man that seemed to manage the cafe. Whatever- or whoever 'The Methuselah of Paris' was, they seemed very important. The name didn't seem to ring a bell in Lucia's mind, but she was never one to be much aware of anything that happened around her.

Lucia blinked, before realizing she was rudely eavesdropping on a conversation she wasn't a part of- even though said conversation was... very loud. The other patrons didn't seem to mind, but Lucia started to feel uncomfortable, feeling as if she had just been caught. "I-I suppose I-I'll be taking my leave. T-thank you again, Mr. Richter, and I h-hope you have a n-nice day."

And with that, Lucia took her leave, making her way back to the airport with the hope she wouldn't get lost once again...
13 Jan 2017 23:25
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Snagglepuss89

Member Seen 23 Apr 2017 21:23





Exiting a cafΓ© for tourists, overpaying for the meal he was already overcharged for




"Au revoir."

He offered weakly as his companion left, hoping she hadn't noticed the color drain from his face. Her envelope could have been a coincidence, so he chose not to remark on it during their conversation. Surely two people could buy the same type of envelope and send a letter in it- although increasingly uncommon in the modern age. The young man who had just wandered in though also carried one. On top of that, he had come to know all too well by now who the Methuselah of Paris was since he had begun his stay in the city. Lucifer Van Bonaparte. This woman, of all the Tea Houses in Paris, was going to be working for him. On top of that, no less than three of his guests had stumbled their way into this exact location.

I reeked too much of fate for him, and the thought made him sick.

Not caring that he was overpaying, he slipped some bills on the table before stumbling out of the cafΓ© and tried to fill his lungs with some fresh Parisian air. It wasn't helping. Oh sure, it was entering his lungs just fine, too fine. He was on the edge of hyperventilating but he felt like he was suffocating. Two other letterbearers, a woman who worked for Bonaparte, and the contents of his own letter. In one tiny shop in such a large city! Could it all be coincidence? Could it be orchestrated? The thought both baffled and enraged him. It meant either the God he abandoned was real, or this Methuselah had just as much power. Either reality was one which Conrad wanted nothing to do with.

And yet.

Yet.

If this was Orchestrated in some way. Was the result of this man who was beginning to fill Conrad with unease the more he thought about him- then was it not more proof? His wish. Surely a man would need to have at least as much power to grant that- more power than Conrad had managed to muster certainly.

As he wandered in the opposite direction from where his brief companion was heading slowly his breathing began to normalize. No, it didn't matter if what he was experiencing today was natural or supernatural. The thought of being... manipulated by some greater force annoyed him, but he would at least force it to work hard to entrap him with coincidence. It was not yet time for him to meet with Bonaparte, and he would be damned if his last few hours of freedom were to be tainted by the man.

So he walked away from the place, with the longest strides that his legs could muster. He tried to forget, for at least a short time, the faces of the people he knew he would see again. Tried to lose them as surely as he lost himself in the streets of Paris, with no rhyme or reason to his wandering. Still, forgetting was not a skill Conrad could ever master. So instead he walked, keeping his pace until he breath ran ragged and he was finally forced to stop and regret his sedentary life style. It only took a quick look at his surroundings to realize that he had no idea where he was at this point, and smiled at the realization. Leaning against the side of a building, he closed his eyes and tried to relax.

Your move God, let's see you work for your amusement.
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