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☆ Helena ☆
Nox Mission


Helena started to back up again, but the beast was taken down before she had to worry too much about it. Once it was crumpling to the ground, she hurried over, retrieving any knives she passed on the way, and went to help Darell back onto even, solid footing again. “C’mon, let’s get you back into the fight.” Not that she wanted to do more fighting, but she’d also wanted to get out of their alive. He came up and got onto his feet, she took that moment to look around again, see where Annabeth and Collete were and if Athalus was handling the one that had gone for him. She was sure that he was, he’d been the one to actually kill any of them, she’d only distracted and wounded.

Which she did again, once she let go of Darell’s hand, lighting up the one going after Drake and the others, helping them out as she could so they all could get out of there. But when she was done, she was panting a little bit. It was pushing at her limits now, at the very least her limits of control. They needed to get out of there soon.
Loose Ends

Masha



Time
Day 4~ 8 A.M.
Location
One Night in Hell, Entertainment District in Ominar

@fallenreaper




As requested, several of the current employees had arrived even on their day off. Several were willing due to the curiosity over the new boss lady as rumors about Cortes being replaced having circulated through the small group. Collected around the bar, they casually chattered only to pause each time the doors came open and resumed when it showed it was not Mash but another of their co-workers. At a glance it was easy to see which ones got along and which didn’t.

Cortes was sitting alone at the bar end, his hand gripped a shot of whiskey and showed a third of it drained. His eyes drifted occasionally to the door as if expecting to be walking through it soon. Bruce had been assigned to be on shift again as he cleaned a glass, waiting for Cortes’ next order before he shifted to the other four collected at the opposite end.

Craige Murray was a very young and handsome man, his appearance seemed to in his late teens or early twenties. Bright orange hair in a short cut and messily darted all over, his skin a milky white and eyes greener than freshly cut grass. It was obvious he had quite a bit of Irish in him by the looks of him, but if anyone was in doubt then his heavy accent would easily correct them. He leaned and smiled at the elder cook, Irma Quin.

Irma was an immigrant, heritage of German and Irish, with a plump and stout figure that gave her a motherly look compared to the other employees. Being the only cook, she rarely got time off so she rarely was ever seen out of her apron and uniform. Her hair was bunned up at the back of her head and she frowned deeply at something Craige said then brushed it away with a scolding comment.

The last employee was Julius Harrison, a slight salt and pepper haired man who idly watched the exchange. Currently he was dressed in a simple blue work shirt and stained jeans spotted by white paint. His stocky appearance gave him the impression of a construction worker explaining why he was originally hired to bounce less than cooperative patrons out the door. He chuckled to himself as he took another sip of his drink then gestured Bruce down for another round.

Masha finally made her way into the club. And though she was a little late, and mentally cursing herself, she carried herself with a posture that said ‘I own this place and I can show up when I want to.’ She was...not sober. She wasn’t really drunk either, but she was not sober. Her hair was still wet from the quick shower she’d managed before leaving Darius's place. It had woken her up at least, and gave her a few moments to get her brain working again.

It has been mostly successful, but she'd backtracked that forward momentum with her opium addiction, but she had needed it to deal with the itching, crawling need. And the pounding headache as well. She pushed oversized sunglasses up into her damp bangs as she came into the much darker space of the club, looking over the assembled staff. “This...this isn't everyone,” she said, gesturing at them with the hand that wasn't holding the strap of her large bag. Obviously Nikki was still not here, with or without her kid, and she was sure there were a few others who weren’t accounted for at the moment either.

Sighing, she came forward more, her heels clicking some. They were fancier than the dress she had on, they were the ones from the night before when she’d gone over to see Darius again. But she’d been smart enough to bring a change of dress with her, so she was a little more business casual in her dark dress that didn’t shy away from showing things. She dropped her big leather bag down onto a table a few back from where most of the staff was gathered. Standing in front of them, she looked them over.

“I did tell you I had to let several of the staff go due to incidents and lack of income,” Cortes stated clearly from Masha’s right.

He took another sip then added, “It seems Nikki couldn’t be bothered to make it.”

A thin, small smile crossed his features before it quickly faded. His figure straightened upon seeing the new boss lady enter, turning to face her and still enjoying his drink. Silence immediately fell on the others causing their eyes to turn to their new boss. There were various reactions that insured from the staff, ranging in mild surprise to subtle annoyance, as they listened to the exchange.

Bruce’s expression, like the first time she met him, showed great indifference since he felt secure in his job situation. His hand continued to clean another glass while he stood there. Julius was the first to move as he stepped forward, and offered his name, “Julius Harrison. I suppose most of us are wondering what comes next. A few of us are bracing for the worse since usually with new employment comes a complete clean out of the old.”

When Cortes spoke she rolled her eyes some. She did not like the man, as she was sure that he didn't like her very much either. Though his dislike probably stemmed from her being his boss. Hers though, was entirely because he was a terrible person. She looked over her shoulder, just to double check no one else was coming in just then, though she was sure that Afua had been right behind her since they'd come in together. So she missed his little smile about Nikki.

Afua, on the other hand, didn’t as she closed the distance between her assignment. Her expression briefly hardened but she said nothing while the ‘rat’ was within hearing range. Causally the woman came to a halt right behind Masha with her arms crossed in front of her.

When she turned back around, she was greeted with the sight of a man in front of her, closer than before, and thus distracting her from checking her phone from word from Nikki. She smiled at Julius, taking only a moment to think about what she knew of him. “Harrison. Bouncer. Relatively new hire,” she said aloud. Smirking, she looked around him at the others as well. “I'm Masha Vorobyova, you're new boss.”

“I have no plans to get rid of anyone,” she said, sounding almost totally truthful. “But anyone who thinks they can't work for me can leave, paid till the end of the week and I'll even have Cortes write good references for you. Provided you deserve that.”

No one seemed to move, but several heads turned to look at each other. There seem to be some sense of doubt in her words that lingered silently within all of them. However, no one was willing to say it aloud and risk bring a female’s wrath upon their heads. Again, Julius was the one to speak his mind to Masha.

“Well, that’s a relief. Now, my question is what happens next?”

She smiled some, somewhat pleased that no one had jumped up to leave. Perhaps there was hope for this club after all if people didn’t so quickly abandon it. “Well, what happens next is we get to work on getting this place up to the standard it needs to be. There’s gonna be some renovations to both the building and the staff. Buffer you guys up some so no one’s getting over worked. If you can’t rise to the challenge though, you will see the door. But I think that’s only fair. Don’t you?” The last question she asked directly to Julius, turning her gaze back to him, smirking some.

“Yes, but honestly I’m lacking faith this place will work out. Mainly with the gang-” Julius promptly stopped mid sentence when he caught Cortes’ relaxed smile tighten a bit. It was a warning tick that the younger bartender was crossing a boundary he should and unless he wanted someone to pay him a visit, it was best to seal his lips. Inhaling sharply, Julius quickly covered his tracks by coughing a bit to explain his abrupt stall.

After a moment, he fisted his hand then tapped his chest a bit to ‘clear’ whatever clogged his breath, “Pardon ma’am, something got caught in my throat. As I was saying, I don’t have much faith with the lack of customers since it’s a rough neighborhood. Most folks don’t like to risk their lives for a bit of fun or at least the smart and well behaved ones.”

Not wanting to collect Cortes’ attention anymore, he turned to leave and return to the bar. Afua, studying the scene, noted his hands tremble ever slightly at his side. Her suspicions were confirmed as she noted the others tense up at his near mistake. Instinctively, as she did with Darius often, her eyes flickered to Masha to see if she had also noted the nervous behavior.

His slip up made her raise a dark eyebrow up. She looked between him and Cortes, and then at the rest of the assembled staff. “If it's so dangerous,” she started, stepping around him some so that Cortes couldn't see her face. She trailed her hand along his arm, and shoulder, glancing up at him with a knowing look in her eyes. “Then why do you come to work here? Besides, I thought taking risks was part of the fun of coming to place like this.”

The cook snorted quietly at Masha’s question, “Everyone’s gotta to eat and make ends meet, Frau. The job market is very competitive in Ominar and living on the streets are no better. I believe many of us rather not be kicked out on the streets and risk being picked off by unsavory characters.”

Julius paused, his figure still tensed and unsettled, as he quickly tried to sugarcoat Quin’s blunt tone, “I think a better phrasing would be: most the time, reputation overpowers experience in the entertainment district when it comes to being hired by other places. If you mysterious become fired or leave a well known individual’s employment, it’s often considered negative enough to rarely get hired elsewhere.”

Masha stopped her walk around him and spoke to the rest of them. “This isn't my first rodeo. Being in, running, managing night clubs has been my whole life. Dealing with thugs and unwanted gangs. I know what I'm doing, I'm just asking you to do as I say. If you can't handle that, then you know your way out of the door I'm sure.”

There was silence for a moment as they began to think about it. Several exchanged eye glances between each other, unheard words passed between them and decisions being made. However, not a single individual walked to the door yet. The atmosphere indicated that no one expected Masha to last very long, but no one voiced their thoughts outloud. Instead, they aimed to see where her take over of the club would take them.

Cortes, naturally, merely smirked. His hands clapped softly in congratulations, through it could’ve easily been seen as mocking in disguise, before getting to his feet, “Well said. I hope your methods work as well in Ominar as they do in your hometown, Ms. Vorobyova.”

Masha looked at Cortes as his mocking clap. There was no doubt to her that was what it was. She thought didn’t make it too obvious that she knew what he was up to. She tipped an imaginary hat at him, smirking just the slightest bit. “Oh I’m sure that I can handle it. Ominar may not be London, that’s true, but that doesn’t make them totally different either.”

She looked around at the assembled group again, placing her hands on her hips lightly. “Now, unless you’ve got any more questions you feel need to addressed in front of everyone, I say we’re done for now. I’ve got lot of work to get to myself on top of seeing where or absentees are at. But I am available for questions generally whenever.” Preferable not before noon, but that wasn’t something that she could avoid right now. There was too much that needed to be done right then for her to be able to slack on and sleep in late.

They shifted to move as the cook, bartender, and one bouncer pulled back into their original duties. Meanwhile the rest began to depart for the door, their uncertainty still hung on the air in their wake. Cortes was the only other not to depart as he shifted about, finishing his drink and casually glanced about the bar area. It was still pretty dead compared to its best days.

Mash watched them disperse, finally pulling her phone out and taking a look over to see if there was any messages that she needed to pay attention too right then. Nothing pressing it seemed, and nothing from Nikki. Grabbing her bag, she walked past Cortes without even looking at him or saying anything and headed straight for the office in the back which she was going to take as hers, for at least the time being. She wasn’t going to give him the ego boost of looking at him and acknowledging him as anything even remotely equal right now. Not when he’d been so blatantly rude to her. She would be the victor in this pissing contest, she was sure of that.
Rebeca smiled and waved him off. “Have fun,” she chuckled. “Us girls will be just fine here on our own.”

Bea likewise waved him off with a smile. “We can find plenty of things to entertain ourselves.”

《》《》


Will noticed the tension in her at his question. He hadn't meant to freak her out any. “Only if you're strictly kosher,” he said with a shrug that was so very casual. “And that's only gonna be a problem for you.” He chuckled softly, leaning back against the workbench, digging into the pocket of his jacket for his cigarettes. “But otherwise, I don’t care what you are or who to pray to. My life choices aren’t always socially acceptable either, so I ain’t got any room to judge anyone.”

He gave up his search and pushed himself upright again. “Well, I guess I’d care if you were trying to kill me or something, but otherwise, don’t care. You smoke?”
☆ Helena ☆
Nox Mission


She held in check her joy at having actually done something right this time. But only mostly. A little, smug smirk crossed her face as she prepared another small volley. She knew she shouldn't over tax herself, but if fire was what hurt them, and as far as she knew she was the only pyromancer in the group, then she had to do it. She watched the creature she'd injured as it geared up to pounce at Athalus. This time, she'd be more direct. The fire that she held in her hand she shot at its face, letting the older man use that as a distraction for getting him with his blades.

She glanced around quickly, doing a check of their classmates and somewhat friends. Where the fuck is what's his face? , she thought, a second of worry creeping in. She might not like him, or trust him really, but he seemed to be the only one who knew what was going on. And she'd like to make it out of here alive, so she was going to need him.

“Darell?” she called before she spotted what she thought was him not to far away with one of the tentacle beasts coming at him. “Shit,” she murmured heading towards them quickly and as quietly as possible. She was already starting to feel the effects of using her magic, but the adrenaline of this whole thing would at least keep her upright for a while more. Just hopefully long enough to make it back to the relative safety of the surface.

“Hey ugly,” she called to the beast, knife in hand, a tingle of flames in the other. “Why don't you try me on for size?”
Yeah things are going good, just a lot of work to be done and not enough hours in the day to do it haha
Sorry that took so long. Super busy irl.
Bea stuck her tongue out at him childishly though she laughed still and settled herself down at the table. She let Roger and Rebeca talk and just enjoyed the tea. As she watched them though, she had to push back the little thoughts of what had happened at breakfast, thinking about whether Rebeca and him looked like they would get along well together. But then again, she reassured herself for some reason, it just seemed that Rebeca was the type to get along with pretty much anyone. Just looking at her smile would make anyone want to smile back. It was infectious.

Rebeca shrugged a little and settled herself down as well in one of the other chairs. “It’s been alright,” she sighed. “Took a little jaunt back home for some time, but only a few days really. Things have been...tense other places. Being American is helpful, but at the same time, it’s not uncommon to be snubbed for that too.”

《》《》


Will sighed heavily as he looked over the state of the room. He was normally such a good judge of people, he didn’t normally make mistakes like this. But his resume looked so nice that he had let the slight nagging he’d felt at the man’s presence slide by. And now he was paying for it. At least, he consoled himself, it had been Roger and not some other paying customer. Roger would understand as he was sure that the girl with him would.

He took off his jacket and started to roll up his sleeves as Estella figured out what it was that she wanted him to do. It took him a moment to get his brain back into the swing of things, but not too long and he was soon enough picking at things that he knew how to fix himself without her telling him to do so. He was glad she was there, as she was smaller than him and could get her hands into places that his big hands wouldn’t fit.

When she seemed done, or done enough, he was sat on the work bench, his own face and hands smudged with grease and dirt, his pants having two dark spots on them from where he’d tried wiping his hands off.

“Good,” he chuckled, smiling at her. “We can stay in Edinburgh a few days and get things patched up then. As long as she’ll make it to Scotland, we’ll be fine.” He stood up, grabbing a relatively clean rag from next to him and handing it to her. “You’re Jewish, yeah?” he asked, his tone clear that he was just curious and didn’t at all mind that she was, or that she was probably from some country that wasn’t playing as nicely with the rest of the world.
Masha


Day 3
{One Night in Hell club | 5 - 7 pm }


After Cortes had led her to the back offices, she had settled down in his seat without giving him a chance to object. After he got out the books out of the safe she went through all of them that they had on hand, making notes on her tablet as she did so, in Russian, so even if he was looking at what she was writing, the odds of him knowing what she had put down were limited. There was a lot in here. A lot of numbers, and part of her was kinda upset that she’d let herself indulge so much. She was still more than capable of doing this, but it was sometimes a little struggle to focus her thoughts for longer than about five minutes before she wanted to do something not so number oriented.

But even still, she could tell that these numbers were not fully accurate. Who ever had been fixing them for him wasn’t as smart as they thought they were. They were good for any passing glance. But the look she was taking was more than that. “How’s that list coming?” she asked Cortes, looking at him over the rim of her glasses. He mumbled something she didn’t fully catch as he gave her what she asked for. She couldn’t look at these column of numbers anymore right now.

She hummed thoughtfully, running her finger down the list and thinking back to where things had gone out for pay role. She had feeling that this wasn’t everything and this wasn’t everyone either. But it could also just be her total distrust of Cortes as well. “It might help if you had some sort of entrainment too,” she said, sounding much more like she was thinking outloud, her accent shifting a little more towards her first language. “And maybe some pretty waitresses too. A few krasivyye muzhchiny...” She laughed when her words came back to her and shook her head. “Good looking guys…” she corrected in English.

“Well you look pretty fucked right now,” she said after a second, taking her glasses off and tossing them onto the desk next to her tablet. “Like I’m frankly surprised you’ve managed to keep the power on kind of fucked. How did you let this get so bad? Because this is much more than just not getting customers in the doors. This is like...criminal neglect…”

“It started with one minor complaint that we weren't quick enough to address and things just crumbled. A pretty simple and unlucky case. Also, with Ominar’s ever changing, it's little surprise patrons no longer flock to this place. It's similar to those ancient route sixty-six roads becoming abandon when new and better highways are built.”

She pulled out her cigarettes again, looking longingly at the slim case next to it. But she knew better than to pull that out right then, so the smoke would just have to do. “I’ll make some calls in the morning about having someone come to take a look at how much it’ll cost us to do a remodel. Unless you have some connections there?” She thought she’d asked, but unless the person he knew was actually good, she’d still go with her own.

“I do, but he might be booked. I'll have to check.”

“I’m going to need you to let everyone know that they need to come in early tomorrow for a meeting,” she said through a breath of smoke, lounging back in the car and crossing one leg over the other without care about how the skirt of her dress rode up as she did so. “Even if it’s their day off, they can spare a few minutes for this.”

“Very well, but I believe Nikki might need to make arrangements for her son. What should I tell them if they don't show up?” Cortes asked politely, but there was hint of seeking something to use to his advantage.

Masha pursed her lips and looked at him to try and figure out what he was trying to get out of that statement. “Well she can bring the kid in for a meeting,” she said with a shrug after a moment. “I’m willing to forgive an absence if it’s for good reason. The first time at least. I’m not without mercy. But I’m also not to be taken advantage of.” She gave him a little smile that had edge to it despite the sweetness of it.

She stood then, without much warning and grabbed at her bag, her lit cigarette in her other hand. “I’m done with business for now,” wobbling a little on her feet. “Think it’s time for another drink.”
Emma

Day 4
{Emma's apartment| Around 6 am }


Emma had had a surprisingly lovely evening. She’d not expected it to go the way it had, but it had been good. She’d had to go home and check on her little puppy dog, but she’d been good. Going to sleep had been relatively easy for her surprisingly. Killian had been a nice conversation partner and she knew they’d make good friends too.

He’d said he’d be by in the morning to walk with her to school. She knew how to get there herself, she had done it for a few weeks now after all. So she got up when Agatha had head bumped her enough to get her up to go out for a little walk. She pulled on a baggy sweater over her t shirt and shorts she’d worn to bed and took her out on a leash that she didn’t bother to hold because there was no way that she was going to go running off. Especially not on the short walk they were going to do around the apartment complex that they lived in. She was running over the check list of things she was going to need for the day and wondering when it was that Killian was going to show up and if she she put her tea in a travel mug or not.

Agatha started to bark some and Emma perked up out of her groggy thoughts to see who it was that had set off the little pup.

☆ Helena ☆
Nox Mission


Helena had managed to sidestep the dark tentacles that reached for her, just barely. They closed around where her feet had been a few seconds ago, but caught air instead of her boot. She looked away for a second as she heard Drake's cry of pain. “Shit,” she hissed, looking back just in time to see the rest of them reaching for Darell since he’d been the bigger threat to it. “Fuck me.”

Darell’s words reached her as she stumbled backwards, almost losing her footing as she did so. “Well that would have been good to know about two seconds ago,” she shot back. “So time to use some heat then.”

Taking a deep breath, she called up the fire that had been bubbling to get out since she'd been pulled down into this darkness. Control, at least a little, was something she'd learned. And her aim wasn’t too bad either. As the beast stalked towards Darell she shot a few balls of fire at its backside, aiming for the legs so as to slow it down. They seemed to hit well, but she wasn’t certain if that would do all that much to it anyways. Magic or not, she didn’t think these things would be so easy to take down.
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