Housefall

Summary:
August 21 2014: A house lands in Flushing Meadows Park. This, naturally, garners some interest

Flushing Meadows Park

Ordinarily the 4th largest park in New York, now with a large Victorian Gothic mansion.


Characters

NPCs

  • Police Officers
  • K'nert
  • Captain

Mood Music:
[* None]


It's a dark, cool night that has just recently bled away from evening. It's about the right time for some to make their way home, while others make their way out to the night clubs, bars and other nocturnal amusements. Vices are whispered on the wind, enticing customers to here, there, everywhere. Streetlights take the place that stars and fireflies once held, displacing torches and familiarity.

Tonight is a strange night. There's a fairly powerful witch here, and she would be enough to give most higher powered magic heroes trouble. By her own reckoning, she's lived about … well, 700 years. But a lady never gives her age away. Not if one doesn't want to end up turned into a pig or worse. As it sits, she's caused a bit of mischief with a few love and party spells. One poor bastard was hexed into being sparkling for an evening.

Sadly, Rain's aunt was a bit drunk when she chose to call her moving home down. And it's ended all kinds of fatally. Fortunately for our heroes, the cops are too busy going 'wtf' to accept that a falling house did in fact, happen. It's a fairly violent happening as the spell is loosed and lost. It's a rather frightening amount of magic to have called and lost. A surge. And Rain has come to see what the hell the surge was, after getting a text from her aunt. "Wha - geez, it's kinda late to be taking the dog out…" Rain has no idea that the house landed on her aunt, as she is making her way over. Only that she can't sense her, and her aunt's not responding to her texts. Odd, that.

And for those in the audience, an immense gothic manor, complete with cold iron wrought fence just in fact, landed in the Queens area. Holy real estate values, Batman!

*

A black B.P.R.D. truck drives up one of the park's wider footpaths. The cab is dark and hard to see into, except for a brightly colored card dangling from an orb compass. The card identifies the truck as a 'government maintenance vehicle' and therefore authorized to use these paths as roadways. The vehicle parks on the edge of the path nearest the crashed house and the driver's side door pops open.

"Thanks, Bill. I'm just getting there now," a deep but quiet voice says, and a massive red demon in a threadbare brown coat steps out of the truck, his hooves scuffing in the dirt. "I'll talk to ya later. Say hi to Rhonda for me." There's a boop as he hangs up and realizes that the assembled cops are staring at him. Some have drawn guns. With a heaved sigh, he puts his asymmetrical hands up. "Hellboy. Paranormal Research and Defense. I'm on your side. Witch problems?"

*

Jericho has some experience in the odd. It's kind of just his life. So when I house does appear out of nowhere and fall down near Flushing Meadows park, he is not too stuck going whisky tango foxtrot to actually slip over and investigate. Discretely. From a distance. At the moment he's doing some google earth-fu. "Yeah… this wasn't here yesterday…"

He lands and folds his bright amber wings away. At his feet a small demonic lizard emerges, hissing at him. "Oh there you are. You didn't do this did you?" Pause. "Thought not."

The hacker hasn't seen the Hellboy. Good thing too.

*

Rorschach doesn't really look up at first. He's focused, deeply focused, on the gurgling of the man at his fight. Donnie "Salami" Salamanco is small time by most standards, a numbers runner and small time pimp. His gold chains and chest hair make him look like a relic from the seventies, although that's probably just an over-enthusiasm for Al Pacino movies. One of Salami's girls turned up cut up last week, though, carved and dumped in a trash can. Salami has told everyone he had nothing to do with it.

Rorschach is just making sure.

"Pl…ease…" the scumbag gurgles, the sole of Rorschach's shoe pushed down onto his windpipe. His hands are ziptied and trapped underneath him and his shirt's been torn open, ripped to his fattened belly. Light wisps of smoke rise as Rorschach lights another match, dangling it over him. "Please. Pretty please. Nothing's pretty. Not anymore." He drops the flaming match, letting it land on Salami's nipple and the punk arches and screams.

Rorschach almost smiles, the spots on his face writhing and squirming. When the house suddenly lands, Rorschach doesn't move, just staring at it for a long moment. Making sure it stays. Sometimes he sees things that aren't there. Dogs. Bones. Devils. Women. Not usually houses.

"Hurm."

*

Huff. Huff. Rain really should just suck it up and fly on her broomstick more often. Watching the electrical engineer run is like watching the world's lankiest, nerdiest cheetah that ever did live on ramen run. Effective enough, but lanky. So very, very lanky. She has the phone given to her at least a year ago in hand. Rain looks fairly scruffy, though reasonably clean (given she's homeless, she's doing pretty well). "Ah…" It landed? Already? Where's her aunt? She adjusts her hat, approaches the house and looks around.

Her violet eyes are wide. Where's her aunt? Why are there now - are those people?

A couple of the cops tip their hats back and STARE at Hellboy. "…" They look at each other. They look at Hellboy. Back to each other. Squint. "Okay, we're not eating from that Mexican joint again." "Agreed." And they look to him. "Damned if we know," The tall, heavyset cop answers. "One moment we were comin' after this lady since she had no pants on, the next there's a damn mansion landing on her." They seem baffled. And then, Rain. Who now stares at the trio in shock and horror. Captain hops off her shoulders. He's an orange male cat, in a tan trenchcoat. And he spots Jericho and a small demoni— LIZARD. His eyes widen, pupils narrowing.

"Captain, no!" No eating anyone's lizard! Rain isn't in range to hear Rorschach, not yet.

Happily, Captain sort of just grumphs instead of pouncing. So far.

*

"Let me try again," Hellboy rephrases wearily. "A naked lady was dancing around drunk and then a house fell outta the sky. You never saw the Wizard of Oz?" Deductive geniuses, the lot of them. Granted, Hellboy has a bit of an advantage, given that this is more his scene than theirs. Nonetheless, the mundane world's ignorance of the stuff he deals with on a daily basis never ceases to amaze him. He pulls out his passport case and flashes his credentials, then steps past them toward the house.

It's at that point that he catches a glimpse of Rain. Overdressed cat, check. Not afraid of a house that fell out of the sky, check. Number one on his list of suspected witches right now is Rain. Number two on his list of suspected witches right now, with his name scribbled out because obviously not, is Jericho. "You two! Stop messing around!" he calls out to them.

*

Thaaaaaaaats a big house. And Jericho really isn't here to sleuth it up, though he's got whispers of something at the edge of his HUD, like chasing code except he suspects that it's really rather like the other night. At least this time it's not in Enochian.

It's K'nert's hissing that gets his attention. K'nert hisses a lot but this sounds more directed. "What is your problem K'ner-" Blink. Cat. In a trench coat. Staring at them. Ummmmmmmmmmm…

For a long moment Jericho just stares, grey-banded amber eyes quite unusual, though not as much as the relatively strong scent of the demonic on him.

*

Rorschach turns his head slowly, rotating like a camera on a slow swivel. He takes in Hellboy, as well, the cat in the trenchcoat, the lingering strangeness. He's forgotten about Salami for the moment, until he hears a coughing, gurgling shudder and realizes he's actually just choked the scumbag unconscious. Hmmmm. He didn't do it anyway. Too stupid to know anything either. Still.

*SNAP* Rorschach stomps down hard on Salami's wrist, awakening the man to sit up screaming and clutching at the shattered bones, his hand useless as he cradles it to his burnee chest. Rorschach has his back turned to him now, beginning to march towards Hellboy and the strangeness around him. But, before he goes entirely, he pauses and speaks back to Salami.

"Got off easy. Next time. Different bone. Your favorite." he says, then starts to walk away. His hands are in his pockets as he approaches, head tilted down so that his fedora casts shadows across the writhing mask.

*

The two cops kind of goggle at Hellboy. He's tall, red and talking strangely. They nod. "Yeah, but …" This doesn't HAPPEN. This just doesn't happen. They were just gonna pick up some hot, half naked drunk chick, put her in the drunk tank and call it an evening. They really are just ignorant. And startled. They nod at his credentials and seem content to help abate the inevitable wave of press and detectives.

Rain herself is alarmed, and horrified looking. Captain, on the other hand, eyes K'nert. "Hey. Hey man. It's the food chain. Respect it," The cat points a paw after speaking in a rich, Gotham-accented baritone. And he stares evenly at Jericho. But Rain manages to compose herself, looking slightly less pale. "Did anyone see a woman - dark hair, bright green eyes, disdain for pants…? She drunk texted me and I've been looking for her," She sounds worried. And sort of in the denial that comes with shock.

Rain cannot hide her magical aura, so if one has the appropriate senses, she does indeed ping off as a witch. The sort of ancient, primal magic humans once wielded before cities became a thing and when writing was regarded as mystic and powerful in its own right.

Rain only notices Rorschach if he comes close, nodding weakly. Her world is reeling. And coming out of the house is an impossibly tall, huge man with an apron and chef's hat on. Following him is a beautiful woman in a feminist symbol shirt looking irritable. They both reek of magic. And the woman is definitely a demon. They seem just as surprised as anyone else. Meet the household help! "…" Stare.

*

As Hellboy gets closer, he spots K'nert. "Great," he mutters. Normally, Big Red is very fond of cats. Normally, cats don't talk and wear clothing or, y'know, hail from demonic alternate dimensions. Erase the scribbles on Jericho's name, then. "So. Which of you wants to say you were just out walking your possessed pet and have no idea where that house came from first?" he asks in an accusing tone, crossing his arms over his chest and glaring at both Rain and Jericho in turn. Then a strange sound causes his head to snap around so that he can turn his yellow gaze on Rorschach and the people coming out of the house.

"And who are these creeps? Everybody stop being weird until I figure out who dropped that house."

*

K'nert just stares at Hellboy. Then he leaps up onto Jericho's shoulder, hissing low, sounding more like conversation. "You know I don't understand you. Why do you do that?" The hacker sighs.

"I don't take this guy for walks. He's more than capable of doing that himself. He does follow me arou-…" Jeri cuts off and stares in the direction Hellboy looked. There's a guy… in a coat… with… his he wearing a sock on his head?

"I um… don't drop houses. How on earth would I do that anyway?" Says the demon-scented man. Yeah, maybe not so helpful there.

*

Rorschach just stares. He keeps a safe distance and assumes a perfect stillness. Humans don't stand this still, not normal humans, but Rorschach isn't normal. Some would argue he's not even human. Biologically, he is, but inside…inside he may have become something else entirely. Can a soul wither? Rot in its shell, like a carcass left in the sun? If it can, that summer stink roils off of Rorschach's broken spirit.

The heat is his hate. It is pure and it is righteous and it is mad and it is wrong.

And it's in the way he stands, totally still, just staring. Demons and whores and magick, the evidence walking of Earth's damned nature. The Earth is burning and only he can see it. He screams silently. He stares. Empty. Wrathful. Waiting. Rorschach.

"Hurm."

*

Captain watches K'nert, and sighs. He hops back onto Rain's shoulders. He inclines his head at Hellboy, alert and curious. This cat is a regular cat, but all magic for anyone with the propr senses. "Ehm. Captain's my familiar. He's not possessed. I got a drunk text from my aunt saying she was in New York, so I did some divination and went to find her," She explains. "This would be my aunt's house. You haven't seen her, have you?" She asks, worried. She glances around.

The two emerging from the house wave. "I am David. I am household help. I usually cook," The immensely huge man states. The woman offers, "Yeah, ditto." They are staff, it seems. She looks to Jericho, "Hi, and um." Is that a guy with - Rain looks curious to Rorschach. "Do you live around here?" She asks quietly. She seems uncertain of all of this. "I was following my aunt's trail and it disappeared abruptly." Uh oh. Poor Rain. "No one tazed her, right? She tends to turn people into lemurs when you do that."

*

"Then you're not my problem. Yet." Hellboy tells Jericho, pointing at K'nert with his eyes narrowed. "But I've got my eye on you, Fluffy. You too, Herm." Yeah, he's just going to assume that the noise Rorschach made was an introduction. Maybe it's short for Hermione? Put him down on the suspected witch list, but with like five question marks afterward.

Then Rain gives him a real break in the case by outright stating that she's a witch from a clan of witches. Yup — this is what a professional paranormal investigator looks like in action. Take notes, people.

He crosses his arms over his bare red chest and stares at her. "Okay. You're a lot more cooperative and less ugly than most of the witches I deal with, so I'll let you off easy if you help me find your aunt and get her to put her house back wherever it came from."

*

Jericho blinks. Witches. It hasn't escaped his notice that he's talking to a demon either, but the demon hasn't reacted in the expected way to K'nert or his markings so… "Um… and you are?" The hacker is most unclear if he should be worried or not. Then the 'staff' comes out. Jeri doesn’t have the magical talent to tell that the woman is demonic unless it's really obvious, but he does have enough brains to figure if they came out of flying house that they're probably not normal.

*

Rain herself works as a healer and occult detective. Though, she cheats. One of her better powers is divination. Freaking cheating witches. Ahem. Rain listens in for a moment. Captain just sort of wriggles his tail a bit. He's clearly amused by all of this, in his smug, feline way.

She stares back up at Hellboy, less fazed by him than most people would be. "Sure. I'm really worried," She admits. Rain gives a physical description.

The cops look to one another, a wince shared. This sort of news is never easy. They repeat the description, including a drunken state and disdain for pants. Rain's face falls. The house? HAS LANDED ON HER AUNT. This news doesn't sit well with the help, their faces going pale. They chatter among one another. "… and you're her only relative around?" They peer, concerned. Rain is not great shakes as witches go. "And um, thanks. I guess." Rain offers, quietly. Still, it's a pretty heavy blow. And in some ways, it seems like she expected. "… I - figured it'd catch up to her eventually. The booze. Not the house" Still… She rubs at the back of her head. An apologetic look to Jericho, too. "Who are you guys?"

*

Looking worried, Hellboy glances from Rain to the house to the cops and back again. "Hellboy. Bureau of Paranormal Research and Defense," he flatly answers the questions directed at him. He truly looks sympathetic to Rain and her loss, but he's also got to do something about this house. "So, can you fly your aunt's magic house back where it goes, or something? It looks kinda weird just sitting there in the middle of the park."

*

"Bureau of…" That's got Jeri doing his hacking thing. A government agency that deals in the magical? And has 'Hellboy' in it's employ?

He's brought up short by the news of the aunt. Ah, so that's what the radio chatter had meant about a house landing on someone. It hadn't made a whole lot of sense at the time.

"Sorry, miss." He says to the apparent Witch. K'nert starts to his, but a sharp look from Jericho shuts him up.

"You're, uh, not from around here are you Hellboy? Neither of you are, I'm guessing." Jericho's experience in the magical is somewhat limited. His experience in demons, also that. Though the two are ratehr related for him. "Any way I can help as a relatively normal person?"

*

Rain is quiet for a moment. She looks thoughtful. "Uhm. I sincerely doubt I have the magic chops to do that. My aunt was like, 700 years old. Easily. We don't even know who or what my dad is so …" She's probably much more limited in her potential. "In a word, no. Not that I know of. I was going to learn but …" Well, she motions to the high heel on the lawn. Rain looks a bit ill actually. She tries not to think about it too much.

She glances to Jericho. "Oh. It's - uhm." She fidgets. "Well. It's sort of - I probably figured it'd happen like this but …" She didn't really want it too. Her gaze is distant from a moment. "Oh, I am. And I'm not. I'm homeless. So I tend to wander through," She admits. The two cops sort of squint. "Hey, hey! I have a spot at the shelter tonight," She holds up her hands. "You can call me Rain by the by. And uhm. I really don't know. It's kind of…" Judging by all of the pauses, ums and such, Rain's just as much at a loss as anyone else. "Do you know anyone SERIOUSLY powerful?" She asks the two. "Because otherwise, we have a parked house. And I don't know that the rest of my family is gonna bother. I am 'unworthy' and my aunt has a drinking problem." Wince.

"… HAD a drinking problem." The household help look saddened, too. "Well, hey." They offer. "We didn't know demons could walk so openly?" They seem surprised, asking Hellboy.

*

Hellboy glances over at Jericho with an unreadable expression. "Nah. I grew up in New Mexico," he answers him tersely, pulling a cigar out of one of his coat pockets and biting the end off. As he lights up with a worn Zippo, he glares at the late aunt's household help. "Sounds like you got a spot at your aunt's tonight," he tells Rain, ignoring any and all questions about what it's like to be a demon in New York. "I can make some calls. See if we've got any decent house pilots. But in the meantime, you gonna be okay?"

Jericho's searching will find a neglected little website dating back several years, and plenty of public records. But the actual activities and membership of the group are a little spotty. If he really digs, he may discover that the Bureau was absorbed by Stormwatch shortly after the Cold War ended.

*

Really digging will have to wait for later, but curious hacker is curious.

"Nice to meet you Rain, and… Hellboy. I'm Jericho and um…" He gestures to the demon on his shoulder. "That's K'nert. I'm going to guess the two of you aren't acquainted since he's not behaving like you are." Which means Hellboy isn't one of Illyana's… which is kind of a relief. He'd expect anything belonging to her that size to be really, really bad tempered. He's dealt with a few before.

"Zoning commission is going to have a field day with this." Too soon?

*

Rain is quiet. She hms. "I guess so," She frowns a little. "That'd be good. I should probably let the cops in at some point, too. There's gonna be a lot of people soon…" She trails off quietly. Captain curls up a bit, eyes half-closing. "I think I'll - be alright. I just feel a bit strange. Like, how the hell does this HAPPEN? But on the other hand…" Handwobble. "I should just chill this evening," She puts her hands to her temples.

And then she looks to Jericho. "Pleased t meet you, Jericho. The cat is Captain. He helps me out," She offers. "This is a first for me." A wince. "Y…eah…" And another headache on top of it. "I suspect I should stay here to answer questions anyway. If my aunt has kept the same staff, then they look as they wish." Read: They're not human. "I'm sorry for all of this."

*

"Why would I know your pet demon?" Hellboy grunts at Jericho. Honestly, it's like people assume Hell is one of those little midwest towns where everybody knows everybody. Plus, did he not just say where he was from? "He spend a lot of time in New Mexico?"

He gives Rain a once-over, then reaches into his pocket again to retrieve a business card. He handles it with his left hand — the one that's not disproportionate and made of stone. "Not your fault. And if you really want to stay out of trouble…" He offers the card to her. "It's my job to deal with weird crap. Keep me in mind."

He glances over at Rain's aunt's cooks again with that same unreadable expression. Look as they wish, huh? "Must be nice," he murmurs.

*

"Most of the demons I know seem acquainted. Bit of a surprise to me." Granted, he only knows like four actual demons and of those only K'nert really hangs out with him. Mostly because it's his job, but there you go.

"I don't think New Mexico's really his scene." But now that he knows it was Hellboy's he can do some more digging. Maybe. People like this guy have an annoying habit of not having an internet footprint.

"My condolences about your Aunt… um…" He looks over to the help. "I guess you'll be taking over? Seems like a bad idea to have… the help running amok?"

*

Rain is quiet, looking between the two. Demons in New Mexico? There always was something odd about that place. The violet-eyed witch carefully accepts the pocket. She smiles up politely. "Thanks. I'll keep it in mind. I usually heal people and work as an occult detective. People usually want exes hexed though," A soft sigh. "I really should get kick backs from the couple's therapists," She furrows her brows. She peers at the card. "I will do that." She promises, nodding. The two demons from the house look back. "And yeah, it's intense magic. I wouldn't know much." She doesn't seem too bothered by appearance.

Then a look to Jericho. "Thanks. And they aren't running amok. Not being human doesn't mean I get to start shoving people around," Rain holds up her hands, palms out. "And maybe. Depends on the legality of it all. Zoning, wills and on." Rain looks weary. "Lawyers." Sigh. "But tonight, I suspect it's best I just ward it so no one wanders into anything magic and rest. The cops are going ot have a lot for me. You're welcome to stop by with questions,though." The both of them.

*

"Maybe I just got a skin condition," Hellboy grumbles. Nope, nothing even remotely demonic about him. "Anyway, I didn't stay there long. Air Force brat." It's true, after a fashion.

"Small world," he says to Rain. "I do a bit of detective work. If you're seriously homeless, but know about this kind of thing?" He waves a stone finger at the crashed house. "Give the Bureau a call. I'll put in a good word for ya."

*

"Gotcha. Well…" Jericho starts to back slowly. "If you guys are all okay, I'll let you do your thing. Come on K'nert." For once, the demon thing doesn't argue with him. At least, he thinks it's arguing, the hissing. It's a demon, he's probably not trying to give him a brownie recipe.

"I'll be seeing you around?" Good lord he hopes not, but the way he gets tangled up in these things… it could happen. It probably will. He should just accept that.

*

It's true. Maybe Hellboy does just have a skin condition. Rain really didn't comment either way, to be truthful. "And yeah, I am. Or was. Who knows?" She looks between the two. Then smiles at Hellboy. "Thank you. And sure thing." Rain waves. "It was a pleasure to meet you. Be well and have a good evening." Sigh. Rain has a lot to deal with.


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