Top Dogs

Summary:
July 08 2014: Jericho returns to Partisan's safe house to find it shot full of holes with an mildly injured Illyana. Oh, and no Partisan. Oy…

Partisan's Safe House

A converted taxicab headquarters with a small apartment, work spaces and lots of room to hide things.


Characters

NPCs

  • None

Mood Music:
[* None]


Jericho has had a bad couple of days. Nan's Mom. Assassination attempts, read multiple, and finally, interrogations by bitchy SHIELD agents. He really just wants to get back to where he's staying and unwind. But when he gets there… there's black blood everywhere, bullet holes in the woodwork, the floor, the walls, the windows. Spent shell casings and the smell of cordite everywhere. And the door. Oh gods. What happened here? His sidearm comes out immediately as he goes on full alert.

"Parti?" He looks around, clearing a corner. "Parti-Girl?" She hates that. He never calls her that… still no answer. Crap. What happened here?"

*

"If you point that at me, I'm going to make you eat it." Illyana says, her voice a low growl as he comes around the corner and finds her in the kitchen, pouring a(nother) glass full of vodka. She's in jeans and T-shirt, but they're dirty and torn and she herself is cut and bloodied in places. Her hair is mussed up and her hand on the counter looks like it's helping to hold her up. Her gaze finally rolls upwards, and those blue eyes are flat with a whole lot of pissed-off.

*

Jericho starts but brings the weapon down from ready the moment he recognizes her. "Illyana." He says, actually sounding relieved. "Whew. What hap-" He cuts off, taking in her injured state. "Are you okay?"

The hacker takes a couple steps closer to see A) If she's injured and B) if she's injured badly enough to need medical attention. He's also trying to figure out where the hell Partisan is and what exactly could be powerful enough to put up this kind of fight to the both of them.

*

Illyana waves off Jericho's concern for her. "Some cuts and scrapes, I'm fine." Keeping her temper in check is exhausting on top of everything else, though. "So. I met your friend." She says flatly, lifting the glass to her lips and taking a swallow of the clear alcohol.

*

"My friend. Partisan, you mean." He looks around, the shell casings and black blood in evidence sinking in. "Uh oh. You two weren't attacked… were you? There was a fight, wasn't there?" Oy. He goes back to the back of the place to see if he can find is CLS bag. He may need it for Parti too. Well, probably not. She heals really fast, but Illyana knows magic so…….. bag.

He comes back out with it. "Tell me what happened?" It's a request, not a demand. "And are you sure you don't want me to look at those?" Another pause. "Er, and actually, she's still alive right?" He has a hard time imagining Parti not being alive, but Illyana is not, he has gathered, anything to be trifled with.

*

Illyana's level look is all the answer that Jericho needs to *that* question. "She took exception to me watching movies." Which, admittedly, Illyana was doing in the place without y'know, anyone else here. Or asking. Because it's Illyana.

"Also maybe thought I was after you? Called you her boy bitch." Which gets him a raised brow from the blonde. "I really don't wanna know."

The latter question has her tilting her head head back and forth as she sucks down another swallow of vodka. "Yes and no." She finally says. "That is some old dark magic you're sleeping with, Jericho. No wonder you're so blase about me. She… or maybe *it* is probably still making her way south from where I dumped her in the Arctic circle."

*

Jericho snorts. Boy bitch. He gets absolutely no respect. And, quite sadly, he's quite used to that at this point.

"Boy bitch, huh? That's new. I'm not sleeping with her and really I rather doubt I'm her type." He says with a shrug. "Partisan goes off for relaxation sometimes. Sometimes she drags me off with her when she thinks I'm wound too tight, but she doesn't bring me with when she goes to get her urges taken care of. She is a friend though."

He sighs. "Arctic circle mmm? I suppose I should go get her pretty soon then. Not like she'll freeze but…"

He chuckles. "Blase? Partisan terrifies, me Illyana, if I'm honest. And if I may say so, you do too on several levels." Not, apparently, enough to prevent him from watching movies with her, or sharing drinks with her. It's possible Illyana's met people who handle fear as well as Jericho does… then again, it's possible that she hasn't.

"I just didn't see the point in screaming and pointing and being a jerk about it. In either case."

*

Illyana rubs at her chin a bit, wincing as that pulls one of the cuts on her jaw. "Dropping a pissed-off seven-foot wolf in a populated area seemed like a *bad* idea and I got tired of trying to deal with her. It. Whatever." She gives a chuckle as he says the pair of them terrify him.

"I do appreciate you not screaming and pointing. My ears'd start to hurt."

*

Jericho shakes his head with a smile. "I'm a realistic kind of fool." He says, remembering that what Illyana called him when he offered to explore the possibility of being a magical battery.

"Yes, it might have been an issue to go drop an angry Bodark on a populated area." He doesn't seem upset. When you keep friends like Illyana and Partisan you have to expect unusual circumstances. Not that he expected this. To the contrary, his heart is still coming down from the little marathon it ran when he had assumed Illyana and Partisan had been attacked in his absence.

"Still. I should go get her." He says rising. "I'd do the same for you, after all. Do you happen to remember where you dropped her?"

*

Illyana gives a roll of her eyes as he insists on going to look for her but she's tight-lipped about any response when he says he'd do the same for her. She levels him with a long look and then grimaces. "Fine." She says, drawing out the word with gritted teeth and a stepping disk appears beneath their feet. She puts the tumbler down on the counter as it rises, shifting them pair of them to Limbo.

They're in her citadel this time, Jericho can recognize the soot-stained stone that make up the walls but the room is new. It's huge, and round, tables crammed with beakers and bottles that have liquids of odd colors and floating body parts line the edges. Illyana walks towards the center of the room and makes a motion with one hand. The floor seems to shiver and then split, a crystal formation pushing upwards in a slow spin.

"I don't need to know where I dropped her." She extends a hand out towards it and the facets of the crystal seem to fill with smoke. Then slowly, it starts to clear as her scrying crystal works on homing in on the bodark that tastes of Limbo.

*

Through ice covered snow it goes, that familiar enough color but it almost doesn't look like the wolf Jericho knows. It's bigger, more muscular, the claws longer, the teeth a mixture of sabres and tusks. More hellhound than wolf in many respects, but that doesn't change much. Racing along the snow, before…oh my. Smashing into a woman just as a shotgun rings out and, there’s blood on the snow. Seems, like Part wastes no time in getting a human form back.

*

Jericho watches with a slight grimace. He's used to death and killing but Partisan, especially as the wolf, is so very visceral. "Well, there she is, then."

He pauses. "I'm going to guess this is how you look in on me as well." Pity it doesn't have a DVD player. Picture's pretty nice. He's never seen her actually assume a new form, well, go about the process of doing it. He had a collapsed lung last time. Sadly the picture doesn't actually give any clues as to where she is. He dearly hopes Illyana lets Parti get some clothes before either he goes and gets her or… possibly she pulls her here.

*

Yeah, if Parti has clothes or not doesn't really concern Illyana. The fact that the wolf just killed someone has her giving Jericho a level Look. Illyana does *try* to be a White Hat, which means killing as a last resort. Part of why the wolf's out there in the snow and doesn't have her magical essence unraveled for curiosity.

"Scrying. It's your friend." Illyana admits. Yeah, that's how she looks in on him whenever the hell she feels like it. The blonde lifts her hands and eldritch fire flares briefly over Illyana's form, her clothes going from the dirty, torn casual attire to leather and fur. Another stepping disk does indeed dump them out into the snow, far enough away Illyana figures she's safe from being attacked by the crazylady.

*

Partisan is, well lets not lie. Let's just be perfectly frank here, Part is eating that woman right there. Poor thing's dead by now, and well hardly recognizable as a person. Ripping that heart asunder, before going for the kidneys which is an interesting detail. The body's anchors to the soul, so no she isn't eating the soul's anchors. Hell it's almost a shortcut to the afterlife free of the sins she accumulated in her time, the wolf has literally snipped the physical from the spiritual. Talk about your, terrifying clockwork right? It's brilliant, it's elder god sorts of brilliant and,.. oh ok lets stop there. She hasn't noticed the pair, for now.

*

Jericho, who is let us not forget in boots, jeans and a long sleeved tee, steps in front of Illyana, between her and Partisan if only because there will be very, very little point to this if the two start fighting again. There's a long moment where he's a little stunned at what he's watching. The look Illyana leveled at him did not go unnoticed, and she could probably tell. He does kill, and will kill as a first resort when he feels like it's the correct response to a situation. In that he's probably somewhere between Partisan who has had a century to get both experienced and jaded and Illyana despite her rulership of a hell domain still has high ideals… even if she'd never admit it. The difference between he and the both of them is mainly this: He's already operating in survival mode and has been for a year. He's already, subconsciously if nothing else, at last resort.

*

Despite the wardrobe change, Illyana doesn't huddle in her coat. She pushes her hands into her pockets and stands there, watching silently. Bringing the wolf to heel falls to Jericho. She figures her stepping forward would just aggravate the bodark.

*

The big wolf snaps it's gaze around and…oh my. No, everything isn't alright. Those eyes are supposed to be amber and, well clever and they just aren't. They're, well about the same color red as the blood dripping from those whiskers, and glowing like tail lights. They're wild and hard and, no folks. The Partisan, is not home.

*

Jericho had kind of hoped never to have to find this out. But he walks forward anyway, charging his polymorpher to full… well, what passes for full, as he does. "Parti? Parti it's me." She's not home, but he's going to try talking to see if he can wake her up. If not? Well… plan B."

He glances behind him to see that Illyana is staying behind. Which is fine. For one, that might just aggravate Partisan. For two? Well damn it he'd just as soon she not get hurt again. Or angry at the friend he's currently facing down.

*

Theres a snarl, as the big wolf drags that carcass back. Yeah, because Jericho and Illyana are obviously here to get a bite to eat, right? Thankfully for all involved, she's not drawing on limbo anymore even if there’s more than a little bit of a residual charge. Nothing to keep the wolf at bay once the curse has been satisfied, normally this takes a few hours but now… well it's a little better and a little worse. The big wolf winces, eyes dimming. There’s a shake of the head, before it just plain stumbles off to the right and hits the snow. Out cold, literally.

*

Jericho sighs in relief, the glow going out of his traces as he walks the rest of the way over. He kneels down to examine the teeth and odd changes to the way Parti looks. Well… crap. She's pretty big like this. Pretty considerably big. The glow comes back, blue, this time as Jericho takes a moment to power up his strength enhancement subroutine from the Wolf program and slowly drags Partisan up into a canine fireman's carry before he turns and walks back toward Illyana.

"Out, as you can see."

As he walks back blue grey light runs over his traces, overriding the sky blue and causing them to flicker. The man shakes his head irritated. "Oh for the love of…"

*

When the wolf passes out, Illyana starts to walk towards them. By the time he gets Partisan up and into a carry, she's not too far away. "Well good. She doesn't know when the chill the hell out." The blonde grumbles.

She raises a hand, teleporting them briefly through Limbo and back to the safe house where it all started. Illyana ditches the coat on the back of one of the dining table chairs, leaving her still wearing a whole lot of leather. Not an unfamiliar look for her though. Jericho's outburst gets a quirk of a brow. "Something wrong?"

*

Jericho sets Parti down on the couch and rubs his temples and his eyes. "Yes. No. I don't know. My traces seem to be 'Awake' now or that's what a doctor who may be an Angel told me. When I picked Parti up… well it felt like someone was running claws along my traces. All of them. And then my hud turned into claw marks and… vaguely Bulgarian writing?"

He glares at Parti's unconscious form. "I can't READ werewolf anymore than I can read Enochian." The hacker grumbles as he resets his HUD - again - and turns back to Illyana with a sigh.

*

"Huh." Illyana says, looking him over and sounding vaguely interested. "Because of contact with something magical?" Oh, he probably doesn't want to know she has a whole vault full of magical things from a dozen different magical traditions. And that she finds the idea of testing how he might react to them… interesting. She perches on the edge of the table, which gives her a little bit of space from the wolf. Just in case it wakes up and feels like trying to eat her.

*

There it goes, Illyana can feel it start and it's utterly unlike the last time. This is warm and pleasant, refreshing even. The temperature begins to climb. Then it begins, shoots of grass and weeds begin to rise above the floor. There’s a warm breeze, humid but not oppressive. Flowers rise, and burst into beautiful shades of red and white. Another breeze, and the wolf… blows away leaving a skeleton which collapses into the flowers like so much ash. It picks up the pace as it goes, you could even swear you hear the tweeting of birds somewhere as those flowers and weeds rise higher and higher, until they're waist high. When from the sudden rush of green, a woman with red hair sits up with a confused blink. She's, well beautiful and you'd presume totally normal if not for the chalken outline of a wolf's skull etched over her face.

"Tha fug?"

*

Jericho had been standing by the couch - between Illyana and Parti once more - for exactly this reason. Well not exactly this reason. He's never seen the rebirth process. The flowers and such indoors is a… really, really kind of surreal thing. Then Parti sits up and Jericho is immediately steps into her field of view.

"Easy Parti. You're back at the safe house." Which is torn and shot up a bit, yes, but presumably still safe. "You and Illyana got into a fight." Might as well mention that part, she'll probably remember.

"Feelin' okay?"

Jericho's concern for the health of people much tougher than he might be amusing if it weren't so apparently sincere. Well, it may //still be amusing. Illyana may note, however, the subtle thrum of his traces as he charges them, just in case he has to intervene in an incipient fight.

*

Hey, Illyana's sitting over here nice and calm! She doesn't even have her soulsword out or anything. The blonde leans enough to the side to see around Jericho, but doesn't make any move to try to get around him.

*

Partisan just looks at Jericho quietly for a moment, before rubbing the sleep from her eyes. "The fuck are you talking about, chrissakes I need a smoke."

And well there goes Naked partisan with a yaaaawn and an absent rub of her ear, looking and sounding for all the world like she just woke up more than anything. There she goes, like nothing happened. "Fuck me…" But that seems directed at nobody in particular. The greenery fading as she departs, slowly fading into the ether entirely.

*

Jeri stands back curious as Parti gets up from all that greenery to know if she's got, y'know, anything on. Nope. Well… that's gonna be interesting. Ugh. Mrs. Kurkeiwicz… she'd better not be up. Jericho turns and goes to grab a bottle of Vodka and a pair of tumblers.

"That." He says to Illyana as he pours. "Was not what I expected. At all."

*

"Was new for me too, actually." Illyana admits. Her background is in the demonic arts, what with being the destined standardbearer for the Elder Gods. The blonde doesn't make any move to go anywhere, both because she's not inclined to help and because she doesn't want to startle the woman into another fight. Partisan's mutterings gets a huff of amusement.

"That vocabulary." She remarks dryly.

*

Partisan returns with a cigarette, a brilliantly red bath robe and fuzzy wolf slippers. Puffing as she eyes the pair. "Right, alright. I was gonna kick your fucking ass, and then everything went funny even for me."

Ashing off to the side as she leans against the doorway "Do we know the woman I'm wearing, or was this some poor random woman who…I really don't have any earthly idea."

*

"That's part of how I know it's still her." Jericho says with a sigh and a drink. "To answer your earlier question, yeah, because of contact with something magical. Or getting zapped by a spell. Guy threw up a light shield of some kind and weirded out my HUD. He said my cyberware was awake now, whatever the hell that means, and that it was concerned I wasn't up to spec." The concept clearly disturbs him a lot more than being in a house with a demon queen and a werewolf who were recently fighting.

"No clue, Parti." He says half turning toward her as he drinks. "Some lady waaay north of here. You got dropped off there. And you weren't looking quite yourself. Didn't recognize me either."

*

Illyana turns to mostly face Jericho, but she keeps her eyes on Partisan. "'Awakened' is a term that we use when something becomes magically active. Sometimes that's a person like oh, when they become a werewolf or bodark. Sometimes it's a thing, like an object that's enchanted or that becomes magical spontaneously because of myths or legends or belief." Hey, if you need an expert on magic…

Illyana turns back to face Partisan and bears her teeth in a dark grin that lacks any semblance of humor. "You were gonna try. Magic holds you together, ‘suka and anything Made can be Unmade." Yeah, Illyana’s still a bit testy.

*

Partisan raises a brow "Cunt, why don't you learn some fuckin manners when you're in -my- house. If this had started with me barging into your place and raising hell, I'd have an awful lot to apologize for by my count. This started, with you wandering your ass into my place. I ain't invincible, and neither are you."Puffing quietly away. "I don't give a fuck who the fuck you are, or how bad you think you are. You wanna keep this shit rolling, that's fine by me because I'm happy to oblige. Difference is now I've got the proper party favors."

Producing a 5lb brick of c4 from her bath robe's pocket. "This is -my- territory, don't forget it."

*

Jericho is massaging his temples. "Oh god. Parti please don't blow me up. Illyana's a friend of mine. She lives in a hell dimension and DVD players don't work there. Sorry I didn't mention it earlier, I just didn't think she'd show up while I was gone since she usually comes to talk or prod me about something. I'm really, really sorry you both got into a fight."

He takes another drink and turns to look at Partisan. Yeah, he's being apologetic and deferential, but he is standing up for Illy here. "Look, Parti, she's had less time among people to learn about these kinds of things than you did, and you only made it to twelve before it hit the fan for you. And she's got inhuman urges… sort of like yours, but demonic. I know it's not old world or even new world manners, but can we give her a pass? I wouldn't have risked your place if I didn't think she was okay. Promise."

*

Illyana gives a soft huff of annoyance at the C4, not looking terribly impressed. Her manner is as ice-cold as her eyes, but she hasn't made any moves. Even her hands are still in her lap.

When Jericho stands up for her, he does get a slightly annoyed frown. Because he's giving a lot of information about her out for one, but also because she doesn't like to use it as an excuse for anything. Reasons to help people understand her a bit, alright. But not as an excuse, which is what it feels like to her there.

Finally she looks back to Partisan and, slowly, starts to stand. She holds the wolf's gaze as if to convey to her that she's not being agressive. "I didn't know it was yours." It's not an apology, because Illyana doesn't usually do those, but it's.. well, something.

"And it looked like you were…" She glances over to Jericho, "Tied up, and dropping in on you would be a Bad Idea. I'm gonna go home now. And, oh yeah, you're welcome." She says flatly.

*

It's Jericho she fixes with a bit of a glare, before her gaze softens "I got this perfectly good brick of C4 unwrapped and covered in red lint, and you know this is going to really irritate me but alright." Peering after Illyana cooly for a moment before sighing.

"All is forgiven." Off she goes, to get the tweezers and delint the c4 because some things do genuinely actually bug Part.

*

Jericho sighs, shakes his head and downs the last of his Vodka. "Thanks Parti." He turns to Illyana before she vanishes. "And thank you too. Drop by again sometime, if you like." Then he pours himself some more vodka… cause he's had a really bad couple of days.

*

Illyana just gives a snort at *that* suggestion. "Yeah, I think I'll skip that. The welcome wagon's a bitch." Her tone's turned wry again and she glances after the retreating Partisan with a smirk. Hey, she is a female canine. "Later." She tells them both, raising her arm and teleporting out. She forgot that long fur coat, but then, she's probably not going to miss it any time soon.


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