When Luna set her daughter down, the little girl yawned and rubbed her eyes. She stared, blinking, at the counter in front of her, trying not to fall asleep. Luna smiled and patted her daughter on the head. “Okay that sounds easy enough.” Luna smiled, grabbing a plate for her daughter. She put a little bit of all the foods on it and put it in front of Emily. Her daughter quickly grabbed a piece of bacon, and she began gnawing on it. She woke up a little more with each bite she took. Luna grabbed a cup and poured some milk in it. “Here, honey. I’ll be right back.” Emily nodded as she continued to eat.
Luna grabbed the eggs and the other tray of fruit. She slipped through the door in front of Mariah and nodded in thanks since she held it open. “I’m fine, a little tired, but other than that.” She sighed, placing the dishes on the table. “The only thing bothering me is Vincent. I just don’t know what to do him.” She rolled her eyes. “I passed him on the way here, and he looks terrible; almost like he hasn’t slept in a month. And he refuses to let anyone help him…It’s very frustrating.”
Mariah let the door swing shut behind and placed the platters on the table as Luna talked, the whole time she chewed on the inside of her cheek at the woman's words. She was glad to hear that Luna herself was doing good, but the news about Vincent was worrisome. She knew that he was having a rough time, only a blind person couldn't see it, but as to why exactly he refused to eat, she could only speculate. Stress perhaps. Running such an Establishment had to be stressful, but she had a feeling there was more to it then that.
"I would stage an intervention if I thought it would do any good. But he's about as stubborn as a mule..." She sighed, heading back into the room for the toast and cereal. There was still juice and milk to be carted out as well. Really, she should consider finding a trolley if this place got any busier... And if more women started showing up, she'd maybe try and enlist the help of some volunteers. As it was, she still had plenty of time to perform her tasks and then some beside, but when they place started to pick up (like she suspected it would) one person would not be able to feed everyone and do the dishes...
Tucking a couple boxes of cereal under her arm, she grabbed a jug of milk and a jug of orange juice before fixing her eyes on Luna once again. "He doesn't listen to anything I say, and worse yet, he's been trying to avoid me. I'm sure of it. Maybe I should just start leaving some fruits or something in his room while he's out and about... He might eat when no one's around."
She doubted he would ingest any more then he already did, but she really couldn't just sit around and watch him waste away. At the rate he was going, eating and sleeping just enough to get by, he'd ruin himself in the long run. Another sigh escaped her; "Actually, I think I'll go bring himself right away here. I'll be back soon, doc..." She murmured, and went to drop off her current arm load. She then put together a plate for Vincent, grabbing a little bit of everything and even poured him a cup of milk before heading out of the kitchen and into the lobby.
Her eyes honed in on Vincent, and she noted Sophia's presence. Moving towards the pair, she held out the plate; "I brought you something to eat, Vincent. It's good, healthy food that will keep you going." Her tone had a bit of force in it, though she was trying very hard to not be to pushy.
Vincent looked up as he heard someone come out of the kitchen, sighing as he saw Mariah coming out with a plate of food, a look of determination and purpose on her face as she walked towards him and Sophia. Vincent leaned back in the chair as Mariah walked up to him and held out the plate to him. "Good morning to you too, Mariah" Vincent said, a bit resigned as he took the plate from her. The way she had spoken made it pretty clear he wasn't getting out of here without eating something, and he wasn't in the mood to raise a fuss over his eating habits with Mariah right now. It's not that he was avoiding eating all together; it was more that he just hadn't had much of an appetite for a while now. He sighed a little as he speared a piece of egg that Mariah had brought with her, taking a bite. After chewing for a moment, he swallowed and glanced up at Mariah, smiling weakly. "Despite what you might think, Mariah, your concern is appreciated" he said, patting her on the hand gently, picking up a piece of bacon from the plate. Hearing a noise coming from outside the front door, the sound of a car engine rumbling, Vincent looked up, raising an eyebrow curiously.
Meanwhile, outside the hotel, a lone car was coming down the road that linked the retreat to the main road, coming to a stop in the overhang outside the main hotel. The drivers side door opened a moment later, the driver getting out, his black longcoat fluttering slightly behind him in a breeze that rolled over the parking area. Jonas Weber adjusted the sleeves of his coat, nodding a little as he shut the door to his car and stepped towards the lobby, the sunglasses covering his eyes sliding back into the brackets mounted next to his eyes as he stepped inside. His expression was passive, focusing his attention on the man sitting on the couch, raising an eyebrow, noting the mans rather haggard appearance.
"Vincent Clarke, I assume" Jonas said as he stared at Vincent for a moment, crossing his arms over his chest, glancing at the women again. One looked to be pregnant, and the other seemed a bit irritated with someone if her body language was any indication of her mood. "I'm Jonas Weber, with Highwater Security. You contacted us several days ago, if you would recall" Jonas said, letting his arms drop to his side, the black metal of his hands gleaming a little in the lighting in the lobby. "You were starting to get concerned about the safety of the residents here, yes? I was sent to get an estimate about getting a security camera network established and a security team on site, as well" Jonas added, closing his eyes for a moment, pulling up the information he had been sent by Personnel before coming out here from his datavault, the information scrolling across the HUD of his retinal implants. "I hope I'm not interrupting anything" Jonas added, glancing between Vincent and the other two women.
(Bleh. Trying to find some way aside from different colored text to differentiate my characters posts XP )
Mariah was surprised when Vincent took the plate without comment. She doubted she had finally won this battle, but she would take it as a small victory none the less. Watching as the haggard man ate a piece of egg, she was surprised when he spoke, and touched her hand, as if he was trying to comfort or reassure her. She blinked, a little surprised as the dark haired male went to eat a piece of bacon, but any response she had died at the sound of a car engine. Her ears pricked forwards as her eyes flicked the main entrance of the building. Soon enough, a man strode in and Mariah was caught a little off guard.
She eyed him suspiciously as he spoke, blue eyes going from his head to his toes and back again. He dressed in black, and a certain hardness to his features. Though his words soon cleared up the initial mystery of the man; he worked with some sort of a security company. Curling her plummed red tail around her slim waste, she regarded Vincent once again. It was odd to see the two men standing next to each other, they seemed so obviously different...
"No, you weren't interrupting..." She commented after a moment. Mariah supposed she had known that certain security measures would be needed to keep the women here safe as very few men had taken kindly to the change. The thought of some of the stories she'd been told about the lives of the women who came here made her shiver.
Sophia sighed softly as Vincent said it didn't concern her, hating how the man seemed to always carry so much on his shoulders. She was about to say something, when Luna came in and she listened to what the doctor said. When Luna addressed her, she nodded her head, letting her know she would come for a check-up later. Then she smiled as she watched Mariah come in, watching with bated breath as she handed Vincent some food. She looked on with surprise as Vincent took the plate and began to eat. Her ears twitched as she heard someone come in the door and she turned in that direction. She listened to the man as he explained why he was here and she knew it was a good idea.
"No, you are not interrupting us at all, we were just discussing something. Yes, we are in need of a security team since our residents are not totally safe here. I know I have been worried someone might come in here to harm people. So anything you could do is greatly appreciated by all here,"Sophia spoke for them. She gave Vincent a look as if to say he wasn't the only one that could help with things here.
Before Vincent had a chance to speak, Jonas raised his hand, giving Sophia a look, his eyes cold and emotionless. "With all due respect, ma'am, you are not the owner of this retreat. You do not have the authority to make decisions here. I am authorized to work out a contract with Mr. Clarke and Mr. Clarke alone. Unless he gave you power of attorney, I'd ask if you would be quiet while I work out the details with him" Jonas said bluntly, glancing at Vincent again. "Would you rather talk in private, Mr. Clarke?" Jonas asked, shifting where he stood, drumming his fingers on his hips. "And do you have any unused rooms on the ground floor? It would make setting up a security camera network if we had a room to use as a security room" he added, gazing around the lobby again, waiting on a response from Vincent. Jonas wouldn't call himself a misogynist or anything like that; he was just told that he was to speak with Vincent about the potential contract. As far as he was aware, Vincent was the only one with the authority to make this sort of decision, anyways.
Jonas had been curious about the size of this place, so he could get the estimate back to his employers. The rumors he had heard around the office before being sent out was that the executives were considering taking the contract here at the retreat free of charge to generate some good PR. After all, they would be helping ensure that traumatized women in need of shelter were safe from those who would want to harm them. Jonas figured the company wanted some good PR after a few guards at a corporate office for Buckley Medical, the biotech company responsible for the augmentations that Highwater Security agents that chose to get augmented, had gotten jumpy and shot and killed a few anti-augmentation protestors when they started getting unruly. It wasn't as if Jonas cared, though; he wasn't about to complain about doing work that meant he might actually do something from time to time, rather than sit on his rear behind a desk in some office building staring at an empty security monitor.
Vincent winced at Jonas tone, rubbing the back of his neck nervously. "There's no need to be rude, Mr. Weber. Sophia does have a point" he said, getting to his feet, taking another bite of a piece of bacon. "And I'm just fine talking out here, too" he added, swallowing a little, a bit nervous to be talking like this to a man like Jonas. Everyone had heard the rumors about mechs, about how their augmentations sapped away their emotions and humanity, but those were just rumors, right? "Anyways, I think there is a room that could be wired for security monitors down the hallway behind the front desk and to the left" Vincent said, furrowing his eyebrows as he tried to recall the proper room. "And how much would all this cost, anyways?" he asked, taking a swig from the glass of milk that Mariah had brought him. He was praying it wouldn't be too expensive, but he wasn't about to hold his breath. "Would you like some coffee or anything, Mr. Weber? I'm sure there's some extra in the kitchen" he added, glancing back at Mariah, a bit of a pleading look in his expression.
The air around the retreat started to fill with a roar as a long forked motorcycle came up to the main building before being parked. With the way Jamie was dressed you would not be able to guess if she was male or female. Hell, with the way she was dressed you would not even be able to tell that she was covered in fur. Her arms covered by the long sleeves of her shirt, her hands covered by her gloves, her tail wrapped around her abdomen, her head hidden away by skull painted balacava, dark tinted goggles and, helmet. And it was one of the only day's she decided to wear pants. As she walked in with her guitar strapped to her back and a duffle bag over her shoulder you almost wouldn't notice the old military .45 handgun in the shoulder holster, but the shining gun with the wood grip Made a great contrast to her clothing. She paid no attention to the people other than the man behind the front desk. "This the retreat for the for the virus victims?" Her androgynous voice wouldn't help them discern her gender. With the security guy there it wouldn't help the level of a threat she might seem like with the mask, gun,and the fact she smelled like cheap booze.
Sophia listened to the security person and let out a snort of indignation as he was very rude to her. She let out an inhuman growl, then seeing Vincent had the situation under control, she relaxed.
"Vinny, you better keep between me and Mr Attitude because he is getting on my nerves. I am calm for now, but I don't know how long I can keep that way if that Metal Head doesn't watch how he acts around me,"Sophia whispered to her friend. Then her eyes went to the door as she heard a new voice speak.
"Yes, this is the safe haven for people affected by the virus. How can we help you?"she asked gently.
Luna laughed at Mariah’s comment. “It’s true, it probably won't work. I’ve thought of doing one several times. But I knew it wouldn't do any good.” She said following the cook back into the kitchen smiling as her daughter drank her milk. “Two hands, Emily.” Luna grabbed the rest of the cereal boxes and brought them into the dining hall. Luna nodded as Mariah spoke. “I’m a doctor, and he doesn’t listen to anything I say.” The woman rolled her eyes at the man’s stubbornness. “And I got the same feeling about the avoiding thing. When he saw me this morning, it was almost like he was about to sh---.” She stopped herself from saying the word, knowing her daughter would scald her for it if she could hear her. She had to think for a moment of how to say what she wanted without upsetting her daughter, “…like he was about to soil himself.” She gave a shrug when she mentioned leaving food for him. “And it couldn’t help to try.”
When Mariah said she was going to give Vincent some food, Luna nodded. “Good luck. See you a little bit.” Once the cook was gone, Luna went into the kitchen and poured herself a cup of coffee, adding plenty of cream. Ever since the change, it seemed more like she was drinking her cream with coffee in it than the other way around. She smiled as she sat down next to her daughter, picking a piece of bacon off the little girl’s plate. Emily gave her a look, one that was telling her to put it back. But Luna just stuck her tongue out and took a bite. The mother and daughter both laughed.
The laughter quickly died when Luna heard the sound of a car door closing outside. Her ears rotated 180 degrees, listening as the front door opened. Luna placed the bacon back on the plate and grabbed her coffee cup. “Stay here. I’m going to go see who that is.” She kissed her daughter on the top of the head after the girl nodded in agreement. “Okay Mommy.” The little girl said in between bites. As Luna got up to walk out of the kitchen, she couldn’t help but chuckle when she saw her daughter grab her glass of milk and began literally lapping up the milk, like a cat. Luna had never really noticed her do that. She knew it was normal, but it was funny to actually see. Luna wondered if she did that unconsciously as well. But right now she didn’t have time to test it out.
Luna made her way out into the lobby with her creamy coffee in hand. She got there in time to hear the new…man speak coldly to Sophia. Her nose twitched automatically as she entered the room. There were three familiar smells, which were of course Mariah, Sophia, and Vincent. But the fourth one was new and different from anything she had ever smelled before. The only thing she could think to compare it to was a combination of flesh and metal. She couldn't show her distaste for the smell though, because she was preoccupied by her distaste for his rude comments.
Luna was about to make a comment about his cold tone, when another new comer walked in. She could smell that it was a female, although there was a scent of a male mixed in as well. Luna walked over next to Sophia. Sophia was sometimes a little too nice when it came to new comers. But all Luna had to notice was the mask covering the face, and she was uncomfortable. She saw that the person also had their gaze fixed on Vincent. It made the fur on her neck bristle out of fear for his life, and she hadn’t even seen the gun yet. If she had seen that, the person would be tackled to the ground, with deep gash wounds in them from her claws. They wouldn’t have been deep enough to be fatal, but enough to disable the person. Being a doctor, she knew all of the right places to hit that would ensure this. “He’s busy right now, how can we help you?” She asked, echoing what Sophia had said, in a calm and motherly voice. “And if you wouldn't mind taking off your mask…”
Jamie looked at the fox woman and relaxed a bit, not that you would see it under the balacava. when the snow leopard addressed her she turned to her and had her duffle bag fall to the floor. She opened the bag and then took of her gloves revealing black furred paws. As she put her Glove into the bag she let her tail out of her shirt. "Yea, I'll take it off..." As she took off he helmet, goggles, and balacava, more and more of her more animal features began to show. Jamie put the things she wore on her head in her bag before closing it. "...And I believe I'm your newest client." Jamie took out a little metal flask in her back pocket and began to drink the contents. With the cap off of the flask the smell of cheap booze intensified. Jamie looked at the woman with a lighthearted smile. "Name's Sam Jamison, call me Jamie. So, there any forms I gotta sign or something or no?"
Ignoring the sharp remarks that Sophia had made, it was at that point that Jonas glanced over at the new arrival, raising an eyebrow curiously as Luna began to speak with her. It was at that point, however, that Jonas caught sight of something familiar in a shoulder holster on the womans body, at which point he strode over to the woman and reached forward, grabbing hold of the womans arm with one hand while pulling the gun out of the holster in the other, his finger off the trigger. "Any particular reason you saw fit to walk in here with a gun, ma'am?" Jonas asked coldly, releasing the girl once he had the gun firmly in hand, ejecting the magazine from the pistol, ejecting the chambered bullet, catching it in mid-air. "I'm going to be confiscating this" Jonas added, starting to dismantle the gun, setting the pieces onto the table by the couch and chairs in the lobby. "You'll be safe here, anyways, so you won't be needing it" Jonas added, shaking his head.
Turning back to face Vincent, Jonas pocketed the confiscated magazine and sighed. "You may also want to consider having a metal detector installed at the front door, Mr. Clarke" Jonas advised, glancing back at the woman who had just come in. "That would be your choice, though. I doubt too many people coming here for help would be carrying a loaded firearm" he said, glancing down the hallway Vincent had mentioned earlier. "I'm going to go check out that room you mentioned, Mr. Clarke. I should be back in a minute" Jonas said to the group before striding down the hallway, his longcoat fluttering behind him slightly.
Vincent flinched a little as Sophia started to get testy, praying people calmed down before someone got hurt. Vincent glanced up as the new girl arrived, tilting his head to one side. "Er, yes, this is the Poconos Womens Retreat. I'm Vincent Clarke; how can we help you?" he asked, blinking in surprise as Jonas suddenly walked over to the woman, wondering what was going on. He was about to object when Jonas grabbed the woman by the arm, but then he noticed that Jonas had pulled a gun from a holster she had wearing, recoiling at the sight. He was quite as Jonas began talking again, taking a ragged breath as he calmed down a little. "Uh... right... I'll be here if you need me, Mr. Weber" Vincent said, running a hand through his hair as Jonas said he was going to check out the room they had started discussing converting into a security center. Clasping his hands together, Vincent got to his feet and stared at... Jamie, she said to call her.
"Uh, welcome to the retreat, Jaime. There are a few forms you have to sign, but nothing major. Just the standard things; medical release forms, liability waivers, things like that" he said, rubbing the back of his neck as he glanced over at the front desk. Last he remembered, he had stored the paperwork in a cabinet at the front desk. "I wouldn't be surprised if Dr. Fitzgerald here would like to give you a quick check up, though" he added, shaking his head again. "And you'll have to forgive Mr. Weber. I contacted the security firm he works for to see about providing security here, and I imagine he was just trying to do his job" he said weakly, glancing at where the dismantled pistol lay on the nearby table. Jamie seemed like an alright girl; she couldn't have been there to cause trouble, right? Vincent had been shot at by some a*****e last month, and it was not an experience he cared to repeat.
Mariah was surprised at the tone Jonas took with Sophia... And though she could understand that the man would like to speak with the person he was told was the owner, that didn't mean he had to be rude. Her ears flattened against her skull, hiding away in her hair as she stood a little stiffer. But Sophia could handle herself; she didn't need Mariah to jump in and defend her. Still, her eyes were narrowed ever so slightly as she regarded the man once again, her blue flicking to his hands which had caught the light of the room when he had moved it to silence Sophia. With a start, she realized what she had believed to be gloves were actually metal appendages. For a moment, a brief thought flickered across her mind about some conflict that had just been coming to light when the virus broke out...
Snapping back to reality, she realized Vincent was speaking to her. "Coffee..." She murmured, trying to let her mind catch up, her brow pulling together in thought. 'Oh... Oh!" She exclaimed, and shook her head. If it wasn't for the fur, she'd certainly be blushing. "Yes, we have coffee, or orange juice... Or water, if you'd like. There's still some food as well if you'd like something to eat, Mr. Weber." She stated, trying to keep her voice cool like his. But that was no easy task. She was to plucky most of the time.
No sooner then she had offered did a new person wander in to the shelter, their arrival accompanied with the sound of a motorcycle. Mariah wasn't as in tuned with her new senses as some, but she didn't miss the smell of alcohol clinging to the... new comer. The fur on the back of her neck raised a bit, as she tried to find any sign of what exactly was under those clothes; male, female? Human or... not? The smell of booze and several personal experiences with drunks had her on guard just as much as the helmet and body covering clothing. As she eyed the duffle bag and guitar, her eyes skipped over the gun a few times, before it hit her what it was. The breath wooshed out of her with a little squeak, and her eyes widened, and to her own horror, she couldn't get anything else out except for a soft gasp as she grabbed Vincent's arm to get his attention... But her own attempt proved more or less pointless for around the same time, Jonas must of noticed the same thing.
He moved quickly, taking the gun and... taking it apart before setting it on the table. He then mentioned something else to Vincent and strode off. Mariah stood still as a statue for a moment , let go of Vincent when she realized she was still holding onto him, and stepped away. She took a minute to decide to follow after the security guy... Keeping her distance of course. She just didn't want him to insult any of the other women here. Slipping off down the hall, she stepped quietly on her bare feet (shoes and her hadn't gotten along since the change).
Jonas was walking around the empty room not far from the lobby, examining the room. This would do just fine for a security center, he had decided, and activated his infolink implant, getting in touch with his superiors. "Yeah, this is Weber. Seems like this place shouldn't be too expensive to provide security for; only one road to the place, so two security checkpoints on the road leading up to the retreat and at the front gates of the retreat itself should help secure it. Could probably secure this place with about a dozen men, total" Jonas said, closing his eyes for a moment. "Yes sir. I'll tell Mr. Clarke that we'll take the contract free of charge, sir. I'm sure he'll be very pleased to hear it" he said, sighing softly. "I'll go tell him now, sir. I'll get back in touch once I've spoken with him, sir. Weber out" Jonas said, cutting off the transmission. Guess the executives had decided that the job here was worth the good PR to take it free of charge. Jonas wouldn't be surprised if they found some other way to turn a profit from the job here, though.
Jonas was about to return when he noticed the radar display on his HUD: someone had followed him for some reason. Turning back to the door, he crossed his arms over his chest, raising an eyebrow. "Whoever is there can come out" he called out, drumming his fingers on his arms. "I'm not going to bite, I promise" he added, watching the contact on the radar display. Probably one of the women from the lobby, though why the would have followed him, he didn't know. Not that he could blame them for being wary, given they barely knew him, and some of the women had to have had a rough time before they arrived here. In some ways, he knew a bit how they had been treated, given how people had treated mechs such as himself before the whole viral outbreak, though anti-augmentation fears had died down in the last year, since the viral outbreak was a bigger concern. Concerns about 'playing God' and 'defying nature' had fallen to the side when it was found that some of the minor medical implants designed to fight infections also granted immunity to the virus.
Jamie had been surprised by the hanzer grabbing her arm and then jacking her gun. She wouldn't have been as pissed off if the ******** didn't grab the arm that held her flask causing her to drop it. "Doing his job, I can accept that." She began to collect the parts of her disassembled gun into her pockets. "Sargent A-hole can keep the ammo, but I'm keeping the family gun. He also made me spill my booze." Jamie picked up her bag and moved over to the hall the man had gone down. "And that guy is gonna owe me a beer for that!" she hollered down the hall hoping the man would hear. Jamie put he bag back over her shoulder and moved back to where she stood before to pick up her flask. ********' hanzer made me spill perfectly good hooch. She pocketed her flask and looked back to Vincent. "Alright Clarke. I'll let the doc take a look at me." Jamie was ready to go with whoever was the doctor, or sign whatever forms she needed to sign. Whatever came to her first.