Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets.   Posted by Artemis.Group: 0
Josephine Hartley
 player, 52 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Thu 25 Jun 2015
at 21:23
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Being dragged into the back room, Josephine's heart sank. As her mother leveled her gaze on her, she remembered that, despite her talents with socialization, her mother is where she got it all from. When she demanded answers, Josephine knew she was in trouble,

"I...I... mama, please...!" she stammered, unable to fully mount a defense, but she shrugged off her worry, and spoke again, more firmly,

"Mama, I've made a choice. I made a hard choice, and thanks to you and papa raising me well, I can make a good choice." she said, hugging her mom suddenly, and leaning against her, regardless of whether her mom tried to push her away or not.

Pulling back, and holding her mother with both arms, she spoke directly to her, wanting honesty, and nothing hidden. Her mama meant way too much to her for this dishonesty, and she wanted her to see that,

"I did good things tonight, and helped good people! And besides a few cuts and bruises, I'm perfectly fine mama. You've raised me well, and you've taught me to survive. I want to do this, and I want you to support me in doing this." she said firmly, hoping that her mom could find a way to do so.
Artemis
 GM, 941 posts
Fri 26 Jun 2015
at 13:45
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
A heated argument ensues though she doesn't push you away when you hug her. She says she won't support you in your suicide and do you want to rob her of the only family she has left, etc? It is about as you expected. After several minutes of no headway Lily finally steps in and tells you to take a seat. She faces your mother with an unflinching face despite the fact that Elizabeth looks furious for being interrupted, she had been in a particularly vehement lecture at the moment. Alright that's enough Mrs. Hartley. You need to stop treating Josephine like a child. Truth is she's a grown woman as she's been trying to tell you but you keep treating her like a little girl. I imagine whether you like it or not she's going to continue. You can either support her and help her through it or you can abandon, as you said yourself, the only family you have left. Elizabeth looks like she's been slapped but quickly recovers. I never said I would abandon my daughter! she snaps. Good. Then you may as well stop flapping your gums and accept her choice. Yelling isn't going to change anything as you can see and all you're doing is making that poor man out there do all the work when we could all be drinking! And Jo here has earned quite a drink. Elizabeth gapes at the woman's bluntness and glares before storming out, presumably to help Billy. Once she's gone Lily laughs and turns to face you. You're too nice Jo. It's good that you care about your mother but sometimes you've got to be a bitch. Some people like that cop at the cemetery you can sweet talk. Others it won't do a thing. Strong women react best to strong women. Once you get that down I think you'll be incredibly affective. I never learned the sweet talking thing myself she shakes her head. But I can teach you to be assertive at least! She starts to go before turning back. Let her cool off a bit and then talk to her again. You can still be nice but don't be too nice. she winks. She'll come around.
Josephine Hartley
 player, 53 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Sat 27 Jun 2015
at 03:01
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Jo was surprised... thoroughly. For her seeming 'lack of social skills' Lily sure just handled her ma in a way she'd never seen anybody do before. Her father, maybe once, had won an argument with her, but that was still a guess, as otherwise, her ma stomped over anyone.

With that, she went with Lily out into the bar, and her shock was registering still, but she hid it with her expression, instead smiling at Billy, and making sure to say hi. She'd missed him today, and she was glad to see him again. She waited around, and did as Lily said she should for a while, relaxing and hanging out.
Artemis
 GM, 943 posts
Mon 29 Jun 2015
at 13:50
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Lily orders a scotch and drinks it lazily though she warns you against ever having too much. Taking the edge off is all fine and good but you can't fight well drunk and you should always be ready for a fight. she frowns in thought suddenly. Well, except for Shojos of course. You can ONLY fight those when you're drunk, well at least according to Ian anyway. I still think he was making that up... Meanwhile Billy seems happy to see you though keenly aware of the trouble between you and your mother as she is slamming things around and has a face of ice that keeps even her regular customers wary of her. Oh look, she's calming down Lily chuckles, standing up to leave. Well I'll leave you to it then. I'm sure either Ian or I will be in touch soon but for now go ahead and take a break, figure out your situation. You know where to find Ian I'm sure if you need anything. It's been a pleasure meeting you Josephine. And remember, if Ian ever tries to add you to his conquests you just put a boot between his legs. It worked wonders for me!

After that you go upstairs and clean up as you are bloody and dirty and now that you have a drink in you, you're feeling much calmer though your mother still weighs heavily on your mind. Should you come down and offer to help she will wave you away and the rest of the night is spent upstairs awaiting the inevitable conversation. It never comes and you fall asleep in your bed still dressed and waiting. Finally early the next afternoon you wake up to find the sunlight streaming in through your window and a tray of porridge and coffee on your nightstand. Your mother sits in a chair, staring at you and you find yourself jolting awake in surprise.

Must have really been through somethin. This is late even for the hours we keep she notes flatly. Look, we can both yell at each other until we're blue in the face but I don't see that changin anything. You got my stubbornness apparently and this argument is just going to go around in circles. Now I ain't happy but you know that. And I don't like that Indian woman at all. I think I remember her from a couple years back, always did have a mouth on her. Don't you go learnin bad habits from her now! she warns. Now, if you're going to be fool enough to go hunting then you had better at least be smart about it. That means knowing when to run away you understand! That's something your father never learned and look what happened to him she shakes her head bitterly. Believe it or not, I still have a lot of hunters that come in and I've been helpin them out not that you'd ever know it if I didn't tell ya. You can start by getting acquainted with some of them they will have good tips for you and they'll keep an eye out for ya. I don't know much about whoever it is you've fallen in with so I will need details young lady. I don't like you runnin around with strangers. And you keep to small potatoes too! Don't go off after some demon or other foolishness, you're not ready. You may never be ready either so get that through your head!
Josephine Hartley
 player, 54 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Mon 29 Jun 2015
at 14:19
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Nodding her head quietly, Josephine was an obedient child, for once in her life, and was quiet, and submissive. She knew when she'd won a victory, and she wasn't about to tarnish it with her mouth.

"I will mama, thank you." she said, certain she needed to thank her for understanding, at least a little.

Sighing a moment, she added, "I'm running with that girl, Lily and a man named Ian. Both seem to know you." she said quietly.
Artemis
 GM, 944 posts
Mon 29 Jun 2015
at 17:06
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
She frowns in thought. Ian eh? Don't recognize the name but then I have helped a lot of hunters over the years. I'll see what folks around here know about them. Well, you wanna tell me what happened exactly? Was it a vamp, shifter maybe? You got cut up pretty good she looks disapproving.
Josephine Hartley
 player, 55 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Mon 29 Jun 2015
at 17:30
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Swallowing, as she suddenly felt like she was under the gun, she responded respectfully, nonetheless,

"It was a spirit. A man, named Standish. We burned his body, I..." she swallows again, "May have lied to a guard to distract him, and then we left. No problem!" she said, trying to sound cheery so her mother wouldn't press her for details of the injuries.

Crap she already knew she'd said too much. Ian was going to kill her.
Artemis
 GM, 946 posts
Tue 30 Jun 2015
at 13:17
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Elizabeth listens, looking particularly displeased about the guard. You know if you get arrested I don't have the money to bail you out all the time. I hope these friends of yours have enough pocket money for that. I used to have to bail your father out constantly. It gets expensive she sniffs. After a moment she continues in a softer tone. Look, you know how I feel about this. I hate it. I thought I was done worrying about family members never coming home or seeing what the job does to them. You remember that look in your father's eyes sometimes? Like he'd just seen all the evil of the world and had to carry that burden himself? Well now you know why. Hunting will kill you Jo. If not your body then your spirit. I hate to see that but what kind of mother would I be if I abandoned you for trying to do the right thing? If I could control you I would but somehow you went and grew up when I wasn't lookin she gives a small smile. And as unhappy as I am about it all, I am proud of what you're trying to do. That don't mean I won't keep tryin to get you to change your mind though. The things you see may just change it for me. One ghost is small potatoes I hope you know. And if anything happens to you I'm going to hold this Lily and Ian responsible so they had best be runnin if you ever don't come back to me. And you, you need to be more careful. If you keep comin home all banged up like this I'm going to put a stop to this nonsense myself you hear me?
Josephine Hartley
 player, 56 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Tue 30 Jun 2015
at 14:27
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Smiling when her mother smiled, Josephine immediately felt much better. She didn't want to have to do this on her own, and now she knew she never had to,

"Thanks mama." she said, throwing her arms around her mother's neck in a hug, "And if something happens to me, blame Ian, but not Lily. She seems to have some sense about her." she teased a bit, smiling again.

After a moment's pause, she spoke candidly,

"I don't know that this is for me either, mama, but I need to try. And from what I understand, whether I know about these monsters is irrelevant... they know about me. Whatever demon killed daddy is out there, and knows about both of us. We don't have to pay attention, but if we do, maybe we see it comin', you know?" she said, adding, "And if there's any chance I get to kill the one that hurt dad, you know I'm going to." she said, resolve tight in her voice.
Artemis
 GM, 948 posts
Wed 1 Jul 2015
at 13:45
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
She hugs you back and makes a face at the mention of Lily. Sense? I think you mean sass honey. I think I remember her from a couple of years ago. One of our customers was givin her guff about being an Indian and she put him through our window. She paid for it but didn't exactly appreciate the gesture she finishes drily.

She listens to the rest soberly. I know you'll try Jo, but you're brand new at this and your dad was an old hand. He got killed after decades of hunting. I know you want revenge but don't you try it unless you are sure. You know nothing right now though I suppose you think you did well today and maybe you did. But one good day doesn't keep you safe from everything out there. Remember that. Now, if you're going to be out huntin all the time I'm going to need to hire another worker, at least part time anyways. That doesn't take you off the hook completely though she adds.

You two finish your conversation and though you are on good terms again there is still a tightness in the air between you. This is not something she is happy about. The next three days pass by uneventfully. Should you go to Ian's home he is not there and no one makes contact with you. Your mother is relieved but you are troubled. Have they given up on you already? On the third night a woman enters your bar. She is black, beautiful and somehow proud looking in spite of her skin. She is finely dressed and has long thin braids and sharp eyes. She walks right up to you, ignoring Billy's request of what she wanted to order. Hello Josephine. I am Victoria. Is there someplace we can talk?
Josephine Hartley
 player, 57 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Wed 1 Jul 2015
at 14:00
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Surprise filling her face, Jo glanced towards he ma for a split second before nodding her head,

"Sure, we can step out front, if you'd like..." she said, holding out a hand to lead the woman towards the front, a quiet area off to the side of the main doorway.

She had no idea what this was, but she was thoroughly intrigued.
Victoria Green
 NPC, 33 posts
Fri 3 Jul 2015
at 17:17
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
She follows you and gives you a tight smile though her face looks on edge. My name is Victoria Green and I am a friend of Ian and Lily's. To be honest, I am sort of their leader she gives an awkward wince as though the title is still new to her. And I'm afraid we need your help. We need everybody's help, there are circumstances that are getting out of control and it's time to implement a draft so to speak. she sighs and starts to walk as she talks, indicating you should follow. I know you are new and you're not a hunter yet but we are desperate and there are so few we can trust. There is a demon she looks around to make sure no one is eavesdropping. Belial is his name, one of the most powerful demons that hell has ever spit out. He has plans to take the world for himself and he has banded together nearly every legion of unclean creature there is. We had a hundred or so good men and women who were just decimated and my father was killed. Our headquarters are in chaos and I don't know who to trust. You though, you are an outsider, you are not involved in this. I can trust you, I feel it. I need every hunter I can get... She then goes on to explain about the Men of Letters, an organization of knowledge gatherers that work in tandem with hunters to rid the world of evil. There are multiple chapters and she now heads the one in New York. Apparently half of the members had been possessed by demons for some time and just that day they were captured and exorcised, which resulted in the deaths of most of the hosts. Belial has tricked a cult known as the hand of Baal into serving him and he will bring hell on earth if he is not stopped. A witch known as Emma Bentley was killed by Belial and only she knows the means to stop him. Lily, Ian and a couple other members are currently trying to recover the body in order to resurrect her so they can question the woman. I know it's a lot to take in but if you are truly serious about hunting it's time for a trial by fire as they say. I need to ready you quickly and it may as well start now. Would you come back and wait for the others with me? You need to meet the rest of the group and I think it's time we had you outfitted properly. You won't be an effective hunter otherwise.
Josephine Hartley
 player, 58 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Fri 3 Jul 2015
at 22:51
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Josephine listened carefully, and although Victoria seemed nice, she sort of wanted to "initiate" her by herself, in return,

"I'd be glad to help! Demons took my father, and I'll be damned if I let one take the world from me." she said, smiling,

"Umm, real quick, if you don't mind... my mother knows about all of this, but I'd like to be honest with her. Please, come and speak to her about it, so she knows where I'm going." she said, leading Victoria inside to speak with her mother.

She didn't want to be the one explaining this to her!
Artemis
 GM, 952 posts
Sat 4 Jul 2015
at 01:18
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Victoria looks unsettled at the idea of explaining it to your mother but at last she agrees, looking nervous. Soon you are all three in the back room (poor Billy, alone again manning everything) and she goes into greater detail about everything she just told you. Your mother listens wordlessly and is silent a long while, occasionally asking for clarification here and there. Apparently things are worse than you realized for this Belial has even the goddess Hecate is helping him, shocking considering you thought her a myth. Even death himself (also surprising) has become involved and has given them the witch's soul to return to her body just to keep these events from coming to pass. An angel and even a few demons are on your side that is how intense the situation is that evil itself has agreed to side with you. She really meant it when she said she needed everyone. As she talks you find her manner soothing and her words to be sincere. At last Elizabeth speaks. Well then if it does no good to keep Jo tucked away I guess I can't deny you her help but if she is killed you will have me to answer to she adds. And what's more you will have my help too. I have a network of hunters that I trust. I can be a base of operations as much as I am able. You're not alone in this.
Josephine Hartley
 player, 59 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Sat 4 Jul 2015
at 01:22
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Surprised at her mama's words, Josephine just listened closely as they spoke, and she was glad that her mother was in the loop now. It made things much, much easier for her. She'd never been good at lying to her ma, as she'd never really tried to. Now she didn't have to learn that skill, thankfully.

"Alright," she said, nodding at Victoria, "We can go then. Shall we?" she asked, ready to move on now that her mother knew what was going on.
Artemis
 GM, 955 posts
Sat 4 Jul 2015
at 17:32
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Victoria looks relieved and nods gratefully. Yes, we will go now. Be careful of who you trust Mrs. Hartley. We have been tricked before and demons and shifters are everywhere. If your bar is not already warded you may wish to do so. Elizabeth waves the concern away. Already done. I had devils traps painted under the floorboards. I'll keep an eye out for shifters too. she adds. Nodding Victoria starts to leave and Elizabeth gives you a hug and tells you to be careful. Soon you are outside with the black woman and you both take a hansom cab to a much finer part of the city. She leads you to a brownstone building some three stories high and very elegant. This is our safe house and only a handful of people know about it. You must keep it secret Jo, even from your mother. The fewer who know the better as this is where Emma will be and we must keep her safe. She leads you inside. It is warded of course, and no humans can enter save for the ones I select. It's as safe a place as I can make it. As you walk in the parlor you see all manner of strange items, feathers, bones, a circle of black powder and in the center a severed rotting head of a middle aged woman. It smells very unpleasant.

ooc: I'm hoping by next week to get you joined up with the others :)
Josephine Hartley
 player, 61 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Sun 5 Jul 2015
at 04:07
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Frowning for the first time, Jo shook her head,

"I will help you any way I can, but I will not lie to my mother." she said, putting her foot down about it. She'd decided that it would be best to keep her in the loop, and she was sticking to it. She was as stubborn as her mother, and she refused to change her mind on it.

That being said, if her mother never asked, she'd never have to lie, technically.

"Why, umm..." Jo swallowed nervously, "Is there a severed head in here?"
Victoria Green
 NPC, 34 posts
Mon 6 Jul 2015
at 18:59
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Victoria nods at your determination. At your mention of the severed head she laughs. I'm sorry I suppose that could be distressing. Her name was Emma Bentley, a witch and a very nasty one at that. She was killed for disobeying Belial. We aim to resurrect her this very night so that she might tell us the means of disposing of Belial. It is our job to be ready when the others arrive with the body. she explains. As I'm sure Ian has informed you, witchcraft is a real element in this world. I myself am a practitioner of hoodoo and though it seems macabre at times it has come in very useful. I apologize for the offensiveness of some of its components though she gestures to the bones and such. I suppose I should ask, how squeamish are you? I'm sure you've never handled a dead body but how do you think you would do with it?
Josephine Hartley
 player, 64 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Mon 6 Jul 2015
at 19:42
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Laughing once herself, Josephine looked quite comfortable,

"Trust me, you haven't seen disgusting until you've worked a bar like I have. Hunters ain't the most clean folk, and when they drink, believe it or not, it gets worse." she laughed, trying to bond with Victoria over this stuff. It truthfully didn't bother her that disgusting stuff was involved, now that it'd been explained what it was for. Hoodoo actually sounded neat, and she wouldn't hold that against her. She judged other women on their actions, and their inner strength, not on side effects of their work. She liked both Lily and Victoria, and she had a feeling there would be even more coming up!

"Speaking of pigs, I've dealt with Ian. I'm sure a dead body couldn't be much worse..." she smiled, laughing again.

This message was last edited by the player at 19:43, Mon 06 July 2015.

Artemis
 GM, 961 posts
Tue 7 Jul 2015
at 18:23
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Oh yes Ian. He's...a character... she chuckles. He's not as bad as he seems. I think he just needs to find the right person to settle down with, well if we don't all get killed first she makes a face. So, I'm thinking it would be good practice for you then to help me sew the head and neck back together. Are you any good with a needle? To be honest there are times when an autopsy is necessary and when you're on the road on a hunt there isn't always someone else to do it. How a body has been killed will determine a lot about what it was that did the killing. You may have to dig around people's guts quite regularly. I figured a simple little dismembered head is a good way to start don't you?
Josephine Hartley
 player, 65 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Tue 7 Jul 2015
at 18:30
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Nodding her head, Josephine responded,

"I'm alright with sewing, a bit. I can give it a shot, and no reason not to practice now." she said, satisfied with helping in this way.
Victoria Green
 NPC, 35 posts
Wed 8 Jul 2015
at 13:15
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Wonderful! I find a half stitch works well if you know it she smiles. It's a good thing she's been dead a while, fresh corpses tend to be slippery you see. Oh would you be interested in tea while you wait? I'm sorry I didn't offer before she shakes her head. I've...had a rough day. And no wonder as her father and half of her company were killed. It's remarkable she's held it together as well as she has! But then you get the feeling that she's very determined what with the world ending and all. It is all so much to process yet in spite of all the distressing news you've received you can't help but be excited. It's much better than rotting in the bar the rest of your life.

She speaks to you through the kitchen as she starts the kettle and tea things, apparently not even realizing you hadn't answered her yet. If you ever need a place to stay there is room enough here though I understand if you want to return to your mother after any excursions. I'm sure a sleep over or two will be warranted though so I'll have a room made up for you when the time comes. Also, you will need better weapons than you have now. A man named Samuel Colt, you may have heard of him, discovered a way to amplify weapons. He had particular success with one gun that is said to be able to kill anything. Unfortunately this ability has not been able to be duplicated but we have had some success. If the thing you are going after is not too terribly strong you can whittle away at them at least. We've been able to kill demons this way and though it takes a few shots it has been very successful. I can amplify whatever weapon you want if you give me the time.
Josephine Hartley
 player, 66 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Wed 8 Jul 2015
at 14:53
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
With Victoria's words, Josephine slowly had it sink in that this business was a lot more serious than she'd initially have hoped. Thinking about Victoria's losses, then accepting the tea, and nodding politely when the mention of staying over came up. Josephine's mind was racing the entire time, poring through all of the eventualities that she'd eventually come up to face.

Hearing about Samuel Colt, she was a bit surprised that his gun could kill anything, but after a second, she realized that earlier the day before she'd thought any gun could kill anyone. Times were changing, and she needed to adjust.

With that, she enjoyed her tea, carried on casual conversation with Victoria, and continued helping her sew, the best that she could.
Artemis
 GM, 967 posts
Wed 8 Jul 2015
at 16:17
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
For the next half hour or so the two of you practice stitching on a piece of cross stitching material so that when the time comes you will be flawless. She is fairly quiet as she works save for occasionally giving you tips on all things hunting though you think it is more to distract herself than anything else.

ooc: Ok, go ahead to the other thread, chapter 5 I believe and join the others! Yay!
Josephine Hartley
 player, 67 posts
 HP 53/53 AC: 18/18/16
 Every bar needs tendin'
Wed 8 Jul 2015
at 16:44
Re: Chapter 5.2: Family Secrets
Yay! *Excited dance*