She let him linger in the fog of drunken inhibitions as she examined her sharpened claws, her brow peaking a tad as he mentioned the word demon. As if irked by the casual way in which he addressed her kind, the lights flickered in sharp warning the moment his suspicions translated to spoken word.
Her eyes, so dark before, lifted from her nails to Mr. Park, and he'd notice a sudden soft glow behind her gaze like a pair of smoldering embers.
Only a fool knows no fear. Disrespecting the underworld was a dangerous treachery...
But her sudden rage fell away as quickly as it had risen, and was replaced by cocky undertones. It was clear that she had gotten to him; she could sense his paranoia, his discomfort, and it fed her.
I drink whiskey, dove.
White bird of hope, of peace, of love. All signs of vulnerability and weakness in the eyes of the devil. It was an underhanded insult.
Fireball whiskey. She tilted her head in mock inquiry, her eyebrows lifting up. Can you deliver?
Hubris brought Ikarus crashing down from the skies.
Hubris made the Mr. Park the metahuman smile in pride at the demon.
Now who was f***ing with who?
"Now now." The flicker of antiquated lights could not be ignored. The wires were far older and far more sturdy to do such a feat without help. "Please don't mess with the lights mam' " To fear was human. To ignore fear, now that went beyond being a normal bloke. One had to be pretty stupid or pretty ballsy to ignore mortal fear and terror.
Mr. Park was neither.
Now what he knew and what the devil lady knew was that he was far more complex than that. Mortal fear and terror were his friends. His pride was the same the morning star held. Hubris, pure and unadulterated seeped from the man as he smirked and turned to grab the woman her drink. "Don't you worry miss." Park replied as his hands took her vice and placed it down on the counter before a glass appeared nary a few seconds passing.
"I always deliver." A sly smile and wink were given. Oh would their game be fun!
Hmph, her words made the man narrow his gaze in caution. Were they to talk of business? Or was he underestimating the patron as he did all the others? His mental processing was too slow to care delve deep. Maybe she was in fact talking about the former, in which case the Korean would be happy to oblige to whatever depravity he had to offer. Dope? He had that, hell he had the best found in the Golden Triangle. Weapons? Mr. Park had that too! The city had a thriving market of cottage gunsmiths. Danger was a commodity he was happy to give way.
Yet that wasn't exactly what she was talking about.... Hmph, how dare the patron make him brush away the fog of alcohol to stop and actually think. Now the Dutch courage his near empty bottle of vodka couldn't save him from his inherit nature. Self preservation was at the top of his list and Mr. Park now with a leery eye gazed at the demon. Just what was her angle?
"It's a local custom to do away with the bad news first before we get shitfaced." The male said as he pushed away his drink and leaned onto the wooden counter. Brown eyes staring into the dark ones the stranger possessed. Under a certain point of view they were hauntingly beautiful. The same way fire fueled by flesh and bone had that unique crackle of a job well done stirred a certain emotion from the gangster.
"We also have a tendency to give our names. Care to give yours?"
“Hey! Watch it!” Her right hand rose from her side, straightening the curled short blond hair style she currently wore, an ode to the fifties, before turning around and, for a few more steps, walking backwards while her brown eyes remained on the over dressed business back that walked away from her. “a**.” She rolled her eyes, turning back around, and walking forth. The bustle of the city was where she belonged. With a name like Juliet Smith, or J Smith as she was listed, she could easily get lost in such a crowded place and that was a preference of hers. Both hands lowered, finding themselves tucked nicely back into her leather jacket, black, pockets as she pushed on. Studded black heels tapped along with the other women’s wear who walked around her. The sound of one pair meshed in so nicely with the surrounding crowd. If one were to listen closely then, certainly, it would come to sound like a familiar tune of some sort.
The heels were just the start. Above those sat a pair of slender, and skinny, leather pants. Covers that crawled up every inch of her long and perfect legs. A point for being a vegetarian. Yes, she could shoot her liquor but, give her a piece of actual animal meat, and it was on! She didn’t have a problem wearing the animals but eating them, oddly enough, she couldn’t do. A white blouse, with a black tie, covered her upper, and thin, frame. She pulled a piece of paper out of her leather jacket, unfolded it, then began to look around, searching for her current location. “Just one more street.” She assessed before taking in another scenic view, a whole city block. Turning, would bring the diminish of the busy streets and lead her into an off way, an older looking establishment. The sound of her heels, which was narrowed to her own song, continued as she entered the building.
“Where everyone knows your name…” She commented, her red painted lips smiled, as she walked into the place. The appearance of which reminded her of a 1920’s bar. A style she secretly treasured since back then, women were treated different. Perhaps dominated more but the mannerism of being polite would never go out of style with her. She continued to walk across the well crafted floor before ending up in the front of the bar where she began to tap her fingers across the well built bar. The smooth texture welcoming her touch as it always has since she first started bar tending. “Hello?” She called out, her tapping paused as she glances around.
Last night had been eventful to say the least. For the most part the memory of the day before was something that would resonate for a while. But that when then and this was now. With a new day a new game.
"Néih hóu." Mr. Park replied as he popped up from under the bar. From the way he spoke the stranger might of caught the Cantonese that was one of three official languages used in the city-state. Loose change in his hands the man allowed them to fall on the wooden counter as he leveled his brown eyes on the woman dressed in leather. "Can you not tap on the bar please?" Words coming out more of an order than suggestion.
"How can I help?" Mr. Park asked once the annoying tapping stopped.
It was rather stereotypical, a touch clichéd, but a cool breeze would quite suddenly blow through the pub, rustling papers, perhaps jingling the glasses around a bit before someone would appear in the corner of the room. Well, more like fade in, and only people who could see ghosts would even notice. Anyways, one second there was none, the next there was a she, a rather pale, ghastly looking girl that was probably very pretty at one point, but for a moment her eyes looked dark and bruised, pale and glazed with death, her skin gray and her dark hair matted and clumped with bits of dirt and lily petals. Her outfit consisted of a once white dress now brown with dirt and red with blood ( probably from the dripping chest wound that left ghostly droplets of crimson everywhere ) and her feet were bare.
She looked puzzled, peering about in a rather stupefied manner before stepping out of the corner and closer to the center of the room, the faux blood droplets that rolled from her body and dropped down faded and vanished after a few moments, before pooling about her feet as she fell still again. “What a positively curious place.” She said quietly, her annoyance rather obvious.
The people there were ignored for the time being, after all, they probably couldn't see her ghostly butt anyways.
Those touched by death were a unique group. According to some they were able to see the dead unlike others. Mr. Park didn't really have an opinion on such matters. Except when he now had to. "The ********." The blonde in leather was ignored. "Hey you." The man settled his stony gaze on the dirty stranger who seemed to drip blood on his precious floor. Now what kind of a*****e did that? Not a very smart one that who.
"When did you come in?" The near ancient door had not whined like it did for the first stranger. "And why the bloody 'ell are you not in a hospital?" Times like these made the man drop his hands down under the counter and grip the shotgun kept close. Hell his hands were already on the cold metal as the Korean waited for a reply. Ghost or not the co-owner didn't like his property treated badly.
“Wait..” Star turned towards the two at the bar, her mouth parting slightly in surprise, her head tilting gently to the side. “You can see me? How ******** cool is that?”
Starlett floated over to the bar where everyone seemed to be gathered and then crossed her legs neatly indian style, remaining atop the air as though sitting upon a cloud. “Hospitals are no use to the dead.” Star muttered gravely, and somewhat bitterly, fingers moving to touch the round, jagged wound that ran through her chest.
So his eyes weren't deceiving him, there was a ghost in the Black Hound. Funny about that, the tavern was named after a local legend. The man vaguely remembered the short stint of it as he looked up at the floating spectre. Something about a psychopomp in the shape of a black canine used to roam when Old Town wasn't old or a town. The last reported sighting were over one-hundred and three years ago. Nonetheless knowing this Park's mind was already turning and wondering if the dead woman was connected to the local history.
"Can you stop doing that." The man ordered as his hands let go of his trusty weapon. The phantom seemed to be harmless and usually his hunch was right. That and the girl seemed to busy poking where something had stabbed her. "You're bleeding all over." The fact that the faux blood disappeared didn't change his stance. Ghost or not the man had to maintain his business free of bodily fluids other than his own and a select few. Miss ghost was neither.
“For the love of…” She called out, jumping slightly as the Asian man, hiding back behind the bar, managed to get one over on her. The hand she was using to tap along the bar had jumped back with her lithe frame and, now, rested along her chest which was, without a doubt, threatening to beat out of her chest. “I’ll make you a deal. No more scaring me and I’ll never tap again, deal?” She inquired, exhaling slowly, now settling her heart enough, and posing a light , yet vibrant, smile. “I’m here for the bar tending position…” She spoke, her words fading off as she began to rub both of her arms, warming them, at the sudden chill that blew through the place. A light shiver ran up her spine before she regained her composure.
Her head, moving the curled blond strands, tilted to the side lightly as the man in front of her began to curse. Not the most professional atmosphere but she’s worked in less. “Yes?” She answered as he continued. “I’ve…been here the whole time we just talked about the tapping?” She irked a blond brow as she turned, glancing around her, in hopes that he was talking to someone else. Did she have rivalry? Was someone else after the same job? Glancing from side to side, and not seeing a single person, she turned back towards him.
“I don’t believe in hospitals…” She commented, wondering what that had to do with the current events, or the job. Perhaps he saw something in her that she didn’t? She knew of other types of beings that could locate cancer out of nowhere, and before any part of it began to show. Her attention lowered as her brown eyes scanned over her body. Down her front, over her arms, along her fingers. She saw nothing. “Of course, sorry…” She responded holding her hands up at the sight of the weapon, showing him that she was harmless, before glancing back up and pausing her actions of searching her body. That was, until he mentioned her bleeding. “I am?!” She vocalized as she continued her search. Seeing nothing, she shook her head. “I am not! Look, are you alright? Should I just come back later?” She inquired, her eyes holding a curious notion within them. Should she leave? Find another job elsewhere. It appeared as if this man had lost it, or was seeing things that weren’t there.
A rather blatantly irritated look crossed over Star's pretty, albeit dirty and gruesome face before she very solidly shook her transparent head. " Are you daft? Do you honestly think I can just stop bleeding out from the wound that killed me? Have you no actual experience with ghosts?" As she spoke her head turned to the side, genuinely curious as to how this seemingly ordinary man could even see her macabre form, and as to why he was requesting she stop her eternal bleeding from marring his shiny floor with faux blood.
Then the blond girl spoke and Star turned to listen, amused at her antics.
"You felt the cold breeze right?" Mr. Park inquired as a finger pointed towards the thermostat on one of the walls. It read a warm 24 degrees Celsius (75 Fahrenheit for us Americans), exactly the temperature where an unnatural chill could be noticed. "The door's closed along with all the windows." The man said as he eyes seemed to be glued on the nothingness above them. "You can't tell me you didn't notice it."
His voice came other rather sternly, the type a parent had when they corrected a child. "That feeling of something cold that gives you goosebumps." Yet not condescending, he was doing his best to make the woman infer what he could see. There was something paranormal in the Black Hound as odd as that sounded to the Korean once he thought it over. "If you raise your hand I'm sure you can feel a drop of temperature." That was of course if the dead, floating lady didn't move.
Even then if the ghost didn't like the fact that Park was asking for the blonde to unknowingly put her hand through the dead woman's dress and moved...well the ghost had to react didn't she? On that note, ignoring the specter the man's eyes lowered to the blonde who probably thought he was mad if she ignored his clues. If that was so the co-owner already had a plan B.
"There's a bloody ghost in here." He would say after she did or didn't raise her hand and sexually harass the phantom.
The lovely blond's semi-dark brows continued to grow, travelling up her forehead, with the pure disbelief of what this man was saying. Clearly, he had lost it. She could turn around, leave, walk out, find a new job, or stay and take this. There were other jobs out there though...right? She could almost guarantee herself that there were but she had walked all this way, used up some of her money to get on a buss, drive so far, take a cab, then walk the rest of the way. In heels! She shook her head, her left hand lifting to rest along her forhead as her body shifted. She felt warmer but that was nothing to get alarmed about. She always ran warmer then many.
"Yes. The cold breeze from when I opened the door earlier. I don't know how many times you hear this, love. But what you have is huge! This place is huge! It's going to take a while for that gust of wind to travel around." She paused, remaining still before nodding. "Yup, and there it is." She stated. Her brown eyes moved over towards the wall, where he directed her, and took in the temperature marked seventy-five degrees. While she preferred it to be seventy-two, the three degrees difference was nothing to be stark about.
"That's a normal temperature.." She stated, her tone falling as if she were oh so close to giving up. "Look, I'll make you a deal. I don't believe in ghost but if you need someone to elaborate and agree on this whole ghost theme you have running, and it means I get the job, then I'll do it." She stated, her form shifting a bit as she moved to stand on one side as opposed to the other she had been standing on. This conversations was getting old. She lifted her hands towards him in a non-threatening way. "I don't believe in ghost, love." She state after he tried to sell her on the whole bloody ghost bit.
As he spoke, dictating all of the obvious spiritual signs that she had appeared within the room -the cause still unknown to her- she turned and looked towards the blond for her reaction, which was cliche to say the least. Just another non believer, which was fine with Star. She hadn't been very popular with the masses when she was alive, and apparently wasn't going to be when dead either; fitting. "Oh, give it a rest, Jim." Star muttered, tone alight with amusement as she floated up, sitting above the woman with her legs crossed Indian style. " Obviously she's a nonbeliever. And in my professional experience that isn't going to change." She nodded in the same pompous way she used to do when alive.
Still floating above the woman, Starlett lifted a hand to pick at the jagged wound in her chest, ghostly blood dripping more aggressively from the rather gruesome wound and down onto the unsuspecting Juliet's head. Of course she wouldn't feel anything but perhaps a cold sensation, such as an egg being broken in her hair but surely it would be a bit disconcerting to anyone who could see the spectre. " The name is Star by the way." And to be honest, she wasn't much of a people-person.