Log:Sometimes Love Just Ain't Enough
It's a couple days after the full moon Reed-House-Attack vampire extravaganza, or Thursday-ish, Lucas leans in the door jamb of Jade's room, one ankle crossed over the other and raps on the door rhythmically with one knuckle. he has his own knock with his cousin so he know he doesn't have to bother hiding all his shit. The truth is Lucas and Landon are a hard crowd to phase and have no stake in that game aside of 'what do you need' and 'how is it profitable for me to help you' and coming though in a pinch. Good times. For now he waits for the invite to open the door.
The first sign that someone is home is the loud meowing of Meezer. Just in case Jade didn't hear the door, he has a helpful cat to complain about it. "Come in," Jade calls.
Jade has a suite, which means the door opens into a sitting room with a couch, television, a sizeable terrarium with nothing in it yet, a cat tree. Through a doorway, there are glimpses of his bedroom, with its king-sized bed, window seat, private bathroom, and expensive trappings. This might be why he was curious that the twins shared a room. He's practially got an apartment up here, all for him and Meezer, who is at the door to greet Lucas with a meow and a head-bonk.
Jade is sitting on his couch, dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, reading a copy of The Advocate. He's really not hiding being gay now. He came out to Dad and the world didn't end.
Lucas shrugs himself off the frame and slides in. Feeling half-dead or not he's still got the swagger that will run the room. He makes no effort to impose this "Sooooo, how'd it go?"Looking around he stops to scoop up the cat. Unlike Theo (even though God and everyone knows the twins tend to emulate half his examples) is wearing his practice t-shirt from basketball, and his shorts. It's May. Cat gets a smooch to teh top of its head though.
The cat purrs and snuggles up with Lucas. Jade may be his human, but he's got plenty of affection to spare. Jade grins as he sees Meezer getting some love. "It was pretty freaky," he says, "but we restrained the people who needed restrained, Fran and her cohorts didn't get in, and when dawn came, everyone was alive and well. Cash and Arthur really wanted to go out, but we didn't let them." He closes his magazine and sets it on the coffee table. "I discovered I've got an latent knack for tying people up with duct tape, so there's something to put on a resume."
Thea pads quietly out of her younger brother's bathroom, rather than coming in from the hall. Must've been here before Lucas even showed up. Oohh. With her comes a burst of white tea and ginger scents, the source quite obviously some form of lotion she's currently rubbing into one arm with her opposing hand. "You were right, this stuff smells amaz-- oh." Blink, smile. "Hey, Lucas."
Lucas arches an eyebrow and faux-noms the cat's head. "Well I meant with you telling your father about joining the Liza Manelli Fan Club." Sliding a look to Thea he greets, "Hey pretty lady. Mad at me?" It won't change his trajectory at all, but these are things he likes to know. "You tell Jaden about our very successful house arrest at Naked Gun-point?"
Jaden says brightly, "Oh, that! Definitely no one got tied up with duct tape. He wasn't all that surprised, and he said it was fine, but to think about how I might need to get married to a woman for professional reasons in the future." He shrugs a little and says, "I'll worry about that when the time comes. Maybe I'll meet an international lesbian who needs a green card, and we can cut a deal."
Meezer purrs and purrs. Jade glances over at Thea and says, "Doesn't it just? I'll get you some next time I'm at the boutique." Glancing between the two, he adds, "Yeah, how did that go? You don't seem any worse for wear."
Thea shakes her head, flumphing down into the seat she'd abandoned before, in order to check out the Bath and Body Works product she'd been itching to try. The scent is so sophisticated and grown-up! "Wasn't really much to tell. Nothing happened -- not here, at least." She quirks a brow at Lucas and smiles wryly. "Why would I be mad at you? I mean, maybe if something had happened to James, I'd be out for blood.. but even then, it'd be in more general terms than yours, specifically."
ROLL: Lucas rolls spirit+1 for: : x3 (Set) : x1 : x1 -- Match Value: 3 (Raw: 2 3 4 2 2 -- d6)
Lucas smiles, satisfied to Thea and say, "Why? What if I jsut respect your feelings? You're family." Perplexing. Though smoothly he shrugs to Jaden and says "It was quiet. We kicked our feet up, watched some movies. Really easy night. Voice got hoarse from laughing too damn hard but eh, kinda like camp with no windows and no choice." Thea was there though. There's no way in hell Lucas is telling that story at all otherwise. He really has his carreer set out for him. "So Uncle RObert didn't care really? I mean, no offense, anyone surprised hasn't been paying anttention adn that's good. You know you have a genuine reaction from people. And our future POTUS is pretty cool." He looks back to Thea listning to her. That look reading Do you want the story to stand with you being the master of composure or correct the story? I got your back. "Jade, so what did happen with Amy?"
"Yeah, he didn't really mind," Jade says. "I mean, I wouldn't go out trashing our name sleeping around with anyone anyway, and Spear is pretty awesome. Mom's been super supportive." Not that he seems surprised by this. Mom is usually super supportive.
"James was okay," he tells Thea. "He, Esme, and Silver managed to keep it together." He then tells Lucas, "Amy straight up threw down with Fran. Threw a punch. Fran caught it, but it was still really badass. Like, her cohorts didn't want to tangle with Amy. Then again, who would? Her and Ashley were both rock stars."
There's really no effective way to explain what it's like to be under the supernaturally-potent effects of vampiric compulsion to someone, unless they've actually experienced it themselves. So the look Thea returns to Lucas makes it reasonably clear that, no, she hasn't really gone into great detail about how the other night went, with either of her womb-roommates. Womb-roomies? Wombies? Anyway.
"I'm not really surprised that they didn't want to go toe-to-toe with Amy, after hearing what Mr. Chen had to say about.. well, family histories and all," she admits, settling into the newer topic. "I guess that extends to Morrison too, huh? Glad he was there with us the other night, even though nothing wound up happening."
On his way up to the room that he shares with Lucas, Landon takes pause, hearing a bunch of voices from further down the hall. He has his book bag with him and more than likely was busy studying, even though reading (or doing anything in the daytime) is mighty exhausting but with the limited time they have outside of home and school with Morrison chauffering them around, you do what you gotta do to not fall behind.
He comes just in time to hear part of the story that happened at the Reed house. He knows all about Amy, but when Jade brings up Ashley, there's a quirk of his brow, "Ashley too?" Rockstar? well, she is one of the most popular girls in school. "Glad to know that most were able to keep it under control." Like he did!
Wombmates. Totes. He files the rest away for now. The cat is now strying to climb him and he endures it instead of trying eat it or hiss at it. The cat's got better luck than half the kids at school. That news on Amy though? He says to Thea in all casualness, "Well there's a reason she's our sister. Because if we said otherwise she'd have her feeling hurt and punch me and who wants that?" Tis what it is. Slapping the side of Jaden's foot he says, "Seriously, proud of you." And on he goes to find a seat to sprawl in. "So our summer is kinda shot. Gotta do this shit five more times. I am. so. excited... lemme tell you."
Meezer is a snuggle bug, alas. Lucas is an interesting visitor and must pay the cat tithe, a measure of his body heat. "Don't be a pest Meeze," Jade says, though he doesn't actually do anything about his climbing cat.
Looking up at Landon, Jade says, "Yeah, we only had to restrain Cash and Arthur. Good thing we did, though. They were hit hard. That old guy Silvio showed up and almost got munched, but we got him inside. The vampires were pissed we wouldn't let them in and threatened to kill everyone we loved." Jade doesn't seem all that upset. Maybe he thinks she's bluffing.
He grins at Lucas. "Thanks, man." Then he says, "After school's out, we could just leave town, couldn't we? If we wanted to? I guess we don't know how far these fuckers are willing to go to get at you guys."
After casting an affectionate, if somewhat weary (really, who among them doesn't feel tired right now?) smile toward Landon as he joins them, Thea shifts her focus toward Lucas and Jade again, nodding at something the latter says. "Yeah. I don't plan on 'doing this shit' five more times. Even if it means throwing a suitcase in the Fiat the day after graduation and taking off for New York then and there, I'm so over this."
Lucas takes the cat's arm and wiggles it at Landon, "You know, Lan, I was thinking it might be easier to study history with Silver in teh study group to see if she can summon any dead presidents tio poll for answers." He does inquire with a look more concerned about hw his twin is holding up, "You get the..>" next chapter done would be the follow up to that. There's a pause though and the answer Jade gets is "They're chained to a 10 mile radius but anyone working for them is not and that's worth remembering. Also what makes you think you going to New York or us going to So Cal is going to make us not tweak out and get a plane ticket and come back or some minion showing up there with, gasp, what they want us to want?"
"Not sure if they are locked down here the way the head Vamp is or not. Or if it's too risky for them to make the journey, but I say we all pack up and ship out when the time comes." Landon will agree with Thea. "So just a little while longer, 'less Mr. Chen says otherwise." There's a slow nod to follow to what Jade says, "Yeah, I heard Mr. Bloomquist was there, besides Chen, he's like the only adult who doesn't think we're crazy." There's this frustration on his features now, "All I know is that we're not allowed to snoop around the cult and... I wouldn't be surprised if some people had some stern words to say to Mr. Chen about all the things he's feeding us." Some people = Theodore and Morrison. "It's for one night, right? One night a month or so? But if what they've threatened is true, they can attack our family and friends before then just to get us to comply. So.. there goes our evenings."
Jaden smiles at Meezer, who looks put out as his arm is wiggled, but he puts up with it, lounging on Lucas in liquid form. He's not giving up his spot. Purr purr purr. "Spear thinks there are adults who know," he says. "He dug up some records from the funeral home, people who were exsanguinated as cause of death. Those people knew people. Someone out there has experienced this before. I told him the adults would probably lie and say they didn't know anything, but it might be worth figuring out who in this town knows what's up. It might be worth asking Spear about anyway."
He gives Thea a gentle shoulder-nudge. "If you head to New York ahead of us, I won't blame you. But that urge will be there regardless. I worry about that. I'm not going to let that bitch get you. Any of you."
"Will it, though?" Thea asks of Jade, though Lucas had raised a similar notion, so he gets a glance as well. "I mean, do we know for sure that they can.. I don't know, 'summon' us like that, from that far away? We're talking about New York, here. It's not like that's just down the road. Maybe there's a limit to their reach, and all we'd need to do is get beyond that borderline."
Lucas sits quiet taking this in, his mood shifting with Landon's stress, and picking up on it. Landon latches onto assuaging Lucas' panic in confined spaces and situations but all teh same he knows his brother doesn't necessarily have to be asleep to have nightmares. The down side of a vivid imagination. He watches and slides a foot out and nudges Landon's. He just watches with that silend conversation. SOlidarity. Agreement. Arching an eyebrow to Thea he reasons, "I know you don't... have a lot in common but Theodore cares what happens to you and we do too. So it's a pain. It's, what, two more months, but wha happens to you matters to us okay?"
"Can't we hire security to keep us from being lured by the call?" Landon asks the group. They were quite the influential family, at least in Lake Havasu, and surely they could afford it. He doesn't notice it at first, but his gaze lowers when he feels the nudge against his shoe. It reminds him to breathe at that very moment, his sights lifting to offer Lucas a silent nod. "Did the others say what they planned to do for the next couple of months? Hole up together again and be the Vamp lure? I mean," His eyes scan the group again, "Despite the urge to want to break out of here, we really had a good thing here. With the security and everything. And less people to keep track of. The vampires can't be in two places at once right? And if they could, they didn't choose this place."
Jaden brings up the town's history, something which makes Landon all the more curious, "Wonder if there's any information in our family library about.. what Chen said about our ancestors. We have a huge collection of books, maybe there's something buried somewhere. Now, I don't know what we'd do with this info, even if Chen said that all five families worked together to trap the old vamp dude. But this Francine is a whole different monster."
"Francine needs a stake through the heart, set on fire, and decapitated for good measure," Jade says. "Barring that, then yeah, figuring out who else knows might be our best bet. I'll have Spear talk to you guys, show you what he's got, and we can check the library."
He frowns thoughtfully. "The problem with hired security is how far are they willing to go? We had to physically restrain Cash and Arthur. We had to keep Arthur quiet so he wouldn't invite them in. Maybe if we holed everyone up in the home theater and bolted the doors with instructions not to open up under any circumstances."
Landon's referencing of the others as a 'lure' for the vampires -- a group which included at least one individual that's fairly significant to her -- has Thea scowling faintly. "Next full moon, I'm not sticking around here unless people who mean a damn to us are allowed to be here, too. Like Esme," she states pointedly, her voice carrying just the tiniest edge to it. Not quite a growl, but close. "As for Francine, I say we figure out how to deal with the revenants Mr. Chen was talking about, so we can torch her nest while she sleeps during the day. Voila, done." She pauses long enough to take a steadying breath, or at least that's the hope. Then she looks to Lucas. "Never said anybody didn't care what happened to me. Just like I care about what happens to you guys."
When Jade says they had to sit on Cash and Arthur he absolutely makes mno mention of Thea trying to threaten her way out of the house or Landon grapple hugging him into a pile of negotiating tears. Nope. THey were all fresh as daisies. "Well, Jaden, that's why they are not ever a part of our safety plan. The word liability could not possibly be more in bold. I mean I don't want him to die, but he's not this family's priority. You don't throw away a bishop for a pawn. Play smart and you have to do either."
Lookng up to Thea Lucas squints, "Don't throw Esme's name into this to use against Landon like that. That's not fair and it wasn't our choice to say no Esme, no Silver, no James okay? our uncle, your father made those rules and he's been pretty generous and reasonable considering we sound? Insane." There's a pause and a deep sigh, "Look, I know... you're scared for him. What I'm saying is we're not the ones you need to convince and honestly? I like the guy. If you present your father with *Hey, I have this very reasonable plan, can I include this one person? This is who we can remain safe.* he might honestly change his mind. Present him a business plan like an audition."
Desdemona arrives from Lake Havasu - Bermuda Avenue.
"Then you convince your father to allow it." Landon says regarding Thea's wanting to bring friends over on full moon night's, but she gets no reaction when Esme is brought up. "I'm pretty sure, despite not wanting the responsibility of taking care of other family's problems, that our not being allowed to have friends over is punishment for our," Stupidity? "Poor decision making." He will go on to say, "Poor decision making which I'm pretty sure was a well-laid out trap by Francine. She wanted members of the five families, so she got them." Muttering, "One way or another."
He nods once to Jade about the tearing up their... poking through their library for historical family reference books or an old tome or something of interest and then regarding Spear's plan. "The newspaper team should be meeting up here in a few." He could mean hours or days. But the boys are still under house arrest, so any meeting needs to happen here when they are out of school!
Looking back to Lucas, he just listens to his brother try to get everyone to think rationally. Or follow some business rulebook.
However, when The mentions the revenants, Landon's fingers snap and he points at her, "That's what I had planned. We find out who their enablers are, who is helping with their day-to-day and use them against the vamps." He then clears his throat, posture straightening, "I brought this up once before, but I think we're way out of our league here and we were told not to do anything of the sort. Leave it the police. I'm hoping that Mr. Bloomquist gets in touch with the police. Adult to adult." He will finally add in a wry tone, "Though I have doubts that anyone will believe even him."
Jaden shakes his head and says, "I don't think leaving anyone to die is part of a win condition. It's well and fair to say family first, but anyone that bitch turns becomes a tool to be used against us. No one gets turned. That's the only way this can happen. If that means I go to someone else's house to make sure it doesn't happen, then that's what's going to happen. Not Cash, not Arthur. No one. Anyone we lose, she gains, and she gets nothing. If they can't come here, I'll go to them. This is bigger than just us."
He sighs and rakes his fingers through his hair. "One of us can talk to Dad, but if you're already talking about excluding people?" He shakes his head. "We'll do it somewhere else. This isn't just throwing people to the wolves. This is making more wolves. Zane's brother? Really? We're writing him off? Next time it might not be Arthur. Next time it might be James. It might be Silver who can't resist the call. We need a plan that protects everyone."
"My loyalty doesn't begin and end with whose name is printed on our family tree," Thea voices in quiet agreement with Jade's assessment. "And especially considering the threats that Francine has apparently made against anyone we love, there's no way in hell I'm comfortable with the idea of sitting here watching Naked fucking Gun while James, Esme, Spear, Zane or Silver," she lists off, defying Lucas by bringin up the Reed girl again, but tacking on the name of someone dear to each and every one of the rest of them as well, "Is left out in the cold and vulnerable. And that's that."
It is a strangely calm Mona that strolls into the suite, her expression decidedly neutral. She's carrying coffee, barefoot, and still somehow dressed to the nines in a Gaultier tee and high-waisted, form-fitting pinstripe pants. There is a dull snort when she catches wind of the conversation as it unfolds, and she must have a damned fine reason to smile to not already have daggers shooting out of her eyes like the expressive form of a shrapnel grenade. She takes after her father in this way, to be sure: she can wear a look of 'unamused' that could stop a raging bull in its tracks, and it's starting to form up around the slow arch of a single brow. "Maybe slow your roll, master strategists," she says dryly, glancing to her coffee as though only now does she realize how tragically non-alcoholic it is. "Your brilliant tactics and unwillingness to speak to the rest of us before charging ahead not only affected all of us, but could have gotten more people killed."
"Pull that shit again and I will personally throw you both so far under the bus with the family that they have to send the paramedics into the sewers to find what's left of you," she says without skipping a beat, before placidly taking a sip of her coffee and sinking to a lean in the frame of the door. She has precisely zero doubt she can accomplish it, from the look on her face. It may just be arrogance talking, or delusion, but she seems completely serious. She points a finger to Jade, like a fingergun, and pulls the 'trigger'. "That."
"If you want to continue to 'every man for himself' this affair, then you limit the damage to yourselves and contain the damage you do. You don't decide who we invite into our own home, boys, and if you fuck up this badly again?" The disgust on her face is plain. "All I'll say is that you should be damned grateful that Jade and I were there to help look after everyone else. If you didn't get 'our families should be working together' as the most relevant takeaway from our conversation with Mister Chen, you're not anywhere near as clever as you think you are."
Lucas presses his fingers to his temple taking a deep breathrubbing his eye and lets the cat hop dow. "Mona, seriouly, we neither chose that or made that rule. You talk to your father. We tried? He came within an eyelash of putting us to the curb. We're grounded. Landon and I have had 0 imput on this plan here. So kindly? Step down. You got a bettter idea then tell Theodore and your dad. What do you want us to do, Mona?"
"Sorry to tell you," Landon starts off, his hands tucked into his pockets, "We tried to get our friends to hole up with us. When we were vetoed from going to the Reed house and were told that we had to stay put here, we asked if the others could come. Theodore said no. Then your father said no." There's even a quirk of his brow now, "None of that was any of /our/ idea and I have no idea where you got that from. The only thing that Lucas and I did was tell Theodore and Morrison that we were in trouble with some biker gang and might need help. We asked them for help and they gave us help." His shoulders lift into a shrug, "By making sure that we go nowhere without Morrison as an escort and, for the most part, get transported to school and back. Thus the house arrest. So get your story straight. All of this? It's punishment for being stupid, like the others, and drinking that thing. It's been out of our control for a while now."
Jaden looks up at Mona, then around at the others. He sits up a little. Meezer meows, because there is a lull in the conversation, and he must fill it with Meezer noises. "We can talk to Dad," he says, "see what he says. Mona might be the best candidate for that, since I'm usually doing something that makes him facepalm." He looks a touch woeful. He doesn't mean to make his father facepalm. He's just... he's just born this way.
"Last full moon was, overall, a success. No one got hurt. We can do it again, and again if we have to. Those who can't resist the urge, we can restrain. It sucks for them, but they'll survive it. Maybe if Dad won't let us have everyone here, we can do what we did last time, split it up. They can't be everywhere at once. At least I don't think so."
"Hey. We have a month, yeah? Or just shy. So I say we invest that time creating a safe house. Like.. not at someone's house house, where people can say who can or can't come in, but some other place. We'll fortify it. Stockpile stuff like.. um. Garlic, and crosses and wooden stakes and stuff. Solid walls. Restraints for the people who need them. Hell, we could dig a moat around it and get some priest to bless the water." Thea shrugs. "That way we'll have a place that we can all go to feel safe next month, where they can't get in, and we can't get out till the sun comes up again."
"Theo, much as I will forever love my brother for trying, proved himself useless with the suggestion of the vault," Mona says without backing down a single inch. "You don't tell me to step down, either." The costumer is clearly seven shades of done and every one of them neatly swatched and on trend. "I plan to speak to Father about this situation as soon as he has time available, because the lot of you fucked this up so spectacularly I'm sincerely impressed by it. If you want me to pity you for being grounded?" There is a brief snort of incredulity. She rolls her eyes like only a teenage girl can.
"In case you somehow didn't notice, our plan actually worked, as did the reasoning behind it."
"We have five more months of this to get through, and I would prefer to spend our time focusing on solutions than on recriminations, but I will be damned if the pair of you fuck us over again by assuming you're the smartest ones in the room and cutting us out of the loop." The look she aims in Landon's direction is wholly bemused. "Do you not understand that by concocting this idiotic plan with Theo regarding the vault, you brought these consequences down on the lot of us? A plan you didn't bother consulting any of us about before you all charged ahead? A plan that completely overlooked the necessity that the safe location be a residence, by the by -- the one actionable bit of information we had about means to protect ourselves -- that was proven true enough by the assault on the Reed house? Someone needs to own it and call it home." Now both brows are up. For a moment, she simply stares as if to drive the point home.
"Not to mention, the brilliant stratagem regarding the family business there, yes, let's just put all of that at risk in some fashion, the seed of our family's over all security and responsibility in the public eye, because the two of you got drawn into this catastrophe?" This is seemingly the reason she's not rushing off to Theodore herself. "Even I know better than that. If anyone ever found out such a thing was even suggested for any reason, we would be ruined. All of us. All that influence, everything the family has worked for, gone."
"We still have a bigger problem to contend with than preparations for next month. Before she left, Francine threatened us all. To come after our families and others to force compliance. Any night is fair game."
Lucas set shis jaw, frustrated and okay very frustrated. Jade gets a nod. "That's the general math of it." An eyebrow goes to Mona and he doesn't even react. Calmly, when she is out of breath he stands. His head tilts at Mona, confused in fact, and letting the storm of fury break against him. Looking back to Jade he takes a deep breath and holds it a moment. "Really happy for you, cuz." He goes to say something else but doesn't. Hand falls to Landon's shoulder and squeezes it hard. His twin gets a sympathetic look, "She wlked in with her mind decided on what happened. Save your-" Nope. His hand lifts off Landon's shoulder and he lets him run.
New Activity ---------
"Concocting?" Landon blinks, "Do you think /Lucas/ wants to be put in a vault?" He hates to say it, but the family probably already know, "He's claustro-freakin'-phobic." He doesn't dare look to Lucas once that is said, though with how close he is to his brother, this has him quietly fuming. "Do you think that we didn't want to be with our friends? Do you think we wanted to spend all night locked up in a place with the possibility of not getting out if anything would happen to Theodore or Morrison outside? No television, nothing to entertain ourselves with? Fuck no. That /I/ helped to concoct that plan? To put my brother, my twin through that anxiety?"
He then adds, "Morrison was helping to protect us here, but he couldn't even have Lennon over, who was also affected by the blood. Or George. Or anyone! Because of /your/ father. So take your misinformed bullshit and shove it. And charge ahead? Charge to where? When we were in trouble, we asked for help from ADULTS. This before /you/ even knew about it. Before we knew what was going on. Why would we go to you, another kid, when you'd think the adults and the authorities would be helpful? We asked Morrison for advice and he said to talk to Theodore. Silver spoke to her freakin' grandmother, the Police Chief, and got a pat on the head. We're not the only ones trying to reach out for advice from people who should know better than us. So charging ahead equals telling the adults in the family who can do something that some bikers might be after us?"
After all of that, with that annoyance still in his tone, but he's slowly calming, he states, "About the plan that worked, he looks to the others, "Yes, we all survived. The Vampires also didn't come here. So right, the idea of separating the group is a thing if they're going for one group at a time. Whether they can get to everyone at once," He shrugs, "They might be psychopaths, but they saw the security we got. Maybe they aren't stupid. Now if you're willing to get off your high horse, I'd be more than happy if you'd talk to your father about this. I have nothing against the others being here, never did. But I understand what your father's concerns were about."
ROLL: Lucas rolls spirit-1 for: : x2 (Pair) : x1 -- Match Value: 1 (Raw: 1 1 2 -- d6)
Jaden clears his throat and says, "Okay, we've all made our point. We've all had our say. This is my chill space, and I'm the host of it, so I'd like us to all be chill." Meezer purrs as he sits on Lucas. He's not a trained therapy cat, but animals can sense distress, and Meezer, much like his human, is generally a good guy. Hey there, human. It's gonna be okay.
"What I want to talk about is what happens next," Jade says. "We've got a month to plan another night in, and as of now til then, all of us are targets. Our parents are targets. Our friends. What do we do about that? I want to see what Spear found out. It may be nothing, it may be something. We look through the library. We start being careful at night, but we also gotta realize their revnants are out during the day. So I guess we just have to be careful in general."
Technically speaking, Mona's had enough general good cheer from seemingly out of nowhere for the past day or so, so it's hard to imagine how her temper might look otherwise. Never once does she raise her voice, or rise from her lean in the doorframe, but she's clearly out of patience with this particular state of affairs and means to put an end to it.
"Yes," Mona says with a shake of her head. "Ignore the silly artist who couldn't possibly understand what's going on here if it salves your ego. Let that attitude almost get people killed again, why don't you."
"For some time now you two and Theodore have behaved as though you're the only ones with a say in what happens in this family, and that comes to an end, now," she says with substantially more calm, but the pointed truth of it is still there. "Thea came to us; we knew what happened, that it seemed like Brenda was torn apart. It's why I attended the consultation with Mr. Chen: because I care about my sister, and the two of you. I heard what he had to say, same as the two of you."
"And Jade and I gave our word we would help the others, which we did. That word matters. It counts for something. It matters even if it means spending the whole time being torn apart inside thinking something might have happened to Thea and us away and unable to do a damned thing about it." There, she starts to bristle visibly, the cracks showing in her calm veneer. "Do you think I wanted that for her any more than you wanted to see Lucas have to struggle with the vault, Landon? Do you really?" The gleam of incredulity on her face is there in a flash again, then gone. "Do you think anyone in this room wanted to see anyone else suffer like that?"
"We have to work together. That much we know, now. It's certain." Her free hand rises to pinch the bridge of her nose. "I realize you think the three of us are nothing more than silly, feckless dilettantes, but for the love of god, we do have a reasonably good understanding of how to handle and approach our father when it comes to troublesome matters, and if that's really how you see us? You should realize it to be doubly tru-"
Jade's words do actually shut her up, and she drops her chin. "Sorry, Jade." At least she seems to genuinely mean it.
Having listened quietly to both sides venting some of the frustration that all parties involved have undoubtedly been suffering, Thea rises to her feet. Somewhere along the line, she seems to have adopted an air of serene confidence that may, depending upon the mindsets of her audience, come across as authority. "Talk to the others. In the next week, we need to locate a residence that we can designate as a safehouse -- whether it's one of the family homes where the parents are open-minded enough to allow a mass sleepover, or a friend's place, or whatever. Between the five of us, we have a network of contacts that spans pretty much the whole school. One of us should be able to find a location that will suit. Then we can start preparations, and installing security measures." Bending, she presses a kiss to Jade's temple, favors Meezer's head with a brief scritch, then starts toward the door.
Lucas is weirdly so glad for that damn cat. Landon starting to describe the inside of that vault in graphic detail manages to wash teh colour that was left out of his face leaving him a little green. Oh, hullo cat. Meez gets a forehead headbump and he adds quietly, "I can't sit ina cafe booth or the back seat of a car without the stupid windo open." He pauses somewhere between letting Landon speak for them and tuning half of it out latches onto one part and looks up blinking and quietly responds, "Mona, We've never thought that of you. We never wanted to talk to your father. Theo went and talked to him, he demanded we go in there. BUt we have not, and will not ever critize or belittle your art, mona. I know that's yeah, got nothing to do with we may all get eaten. That you think that? That's a problem and one that doesn't need to be okay? You're scared. I get it. We are too and let me tell you there are people near and dear to all of us in a really bad spot. We couldn't even see our sister and our other one got into a ground fight with a renegade cultist. So I promise you you are not the only one that gives a shit." He pauses nad gestures to Thea and gives her the apologetic tilts of his head tired, "Also your sister asked us to respect her wishes and not tell you because she wanted the news to come from her which was...entirely resonable." He looks back to the cat headbutting him. "Hi. Thanks."
"The both of us /and/ Theodore?" Landon can't help but scoff, "You're unfreakin' believable. You know why went to Theo? Because we watched his fiance get ripped apart before us. He had to know, even if we weren't exactly sure if it happened ourselves. And Lucas and I never had a say. We said that we were going to the Reed house with everyone for protection and that was shot down. Then we were told we'd be stuck in a vault. Then stuck at home without our friends and family. Thea was only dragged in because she drank the blood too."
He can already sense Lucas' anxiety, making his way toward his brother to ruffle his twin's hair, before crouching down to set a hand on the other's shoulder. His eyes are on the cat now too. Then when told what the twins thought of Mona, there's some confusion on Landon's features, "I don't know who told you that, but we never thought poorly of any of you. You're /Uncle Robert's/ kids, we've always respected the three of you and see you as cousins as much as we see the Lesters as our cousins, despite knowing them for much longer."
After a moment, he rises slowly, giving Lucas' shoulder one last pat. Something comes to mind, "There's the Lester basement. Morrison said that if we weren't allowed to stay here, because he wasn't allowing us to go to the Reed's, then we'd use the basement to hide in. That said, "We'll have to convince him to allow everyone to stay. And there won't be ample space, but I'm sure there are other options--" He then looks to Lucas, "Which we may or may not be allowed to go to, but Morrison said that he'll go anywhere we need to go..." He then shakes his head slowly, "He's just not going to be happy about us grouping up."
Jaden smiles softly at Thea and gives her hand a squeeze before she goes. Meezer headbonks Lucas and meows. He's got such a loud meow! He can't help it. He's a Siamese. He also has a rumbling purr and no real concept of personal space. He bonks Landon's arm, too. Jade smiles fondly at the animal. That's his Meez, making friends and influencing people.
"If we can't get everyone under one roof, we can at least gather as many people as we can. The ones we can't, we set up a plan. Someone to watch them, restraint if it's needed, behind the closed door of a house someone owns. We bunch up as many as we can."
He licks his lips delicately, then says, "If all our families have certain traits, we should learn how to use them to our advantage. Like the Lesters, they stand a very real chance of scaring these bloodsuckers. Fighting them, even. I'd lose in a fight, but what can we do to support the ones who can fight? What can the Bloomquists do? The Freelands? The Thistles?"
Mona's attention skims to Jade as Landon replies, but she says nothing -- verbally, at least. That brow darts up again, all the same. Still, she's behaving herself per request.
"Ideally," Mona says far more calmly, even if that calm is somewhat forced, "we can harden the defenses at everyone's home. Make sure there is a stash bag of potential weapons, and restraints, in case of need. We didn't have time to complete that this time, but we need to begin assembling kits and making sure everyone potentially affected or involved or willing to assist has one."
She takes another slow drink of her coffee, her expression thoughtful. "Lucas, I saw Cash losing it over similar fears at the Reeds', and I had a few thoughts?" There's at least the normal measure of empathy in her face now. "I want to figure out something for you that won't cause trauma, even if it's working on getting used to the idea of a confined space for a short while each day as immersion therapy, but I think we can work out something much better than that if we put our heads together." She knows it sucks, and the need to manage the issue isn't lost on her.
"Dividing us means fewer defenders, true enough, but it means they have to divide up or choose their targets more carefully as well. Father was right that this house is likely the most defended and protected compound in all of Lake Havasu, so we're an easy choice as a place to go to ground if we have to. We may not have time to get here, though, and so spreading out the supplies and keeping everyone stocked and ready is going to help. We don't know when the first friendly door is the one we can reach." Or window, but she hasn't heard about that one yet!
"We don't back down, and will flense someone alive with words, though I suspect it's the former and the sometimes necessity of an appearance of strength for others to be given an example by." To this, she raises her coffee cup in a sarcastic salute to fate. "Otherwise, vampires have a secret weakness as regards foul language, but that is unlikely."
Thea heads towards Lake Havasu - Bermuda Avenue <O>.
Lucas looks up to Landon tracking him. The ruffle of his hair getting him to crack a faint grin and run his fingers through it so it lays back down. The side of Landon's arm gets a squeeze. Almost always casually drawn back from people, you can't with the other half(vs) of one's self. It's his wombmate.
Standing he wals over to Mona now that the great outpouring of emotion is subsided and asks her, "Truce? You know I won't feed Heather to just any wolf." The eyebrow goes up. God what he wouldn't have someone pay for them all to go back to heather having a hissy fit being rude in their living room be their biggest damn issue again.
Considering the evidence he says "Three or two locations. I wouldn't get more spread out than that because if you said there's what? Sevenish and Francine? It'll take a bit to deal with them. And they're afraid of Amy and we learned..." He looks to Landon for the other half of that thought. eyebrow arches looking o the room. "I think Bloomquists might have some solid ground. We already know the Thistle house is likely non-optimal as it was attachked-" He pauses and lookds to Jade and does finish teh whys hows or situation around that. other than to say "Cash and Hector were attacked there. So we'll see. We'll look into what assets are available and discuss what looks best." That's the important part.
Notably he is not quick to answer about the rest. His head shakes and says to Mona, "Unless you wnat to see me in a hospital that is really not likely to happen but we can talk about options before ruling anything out." Taking a deep breath and trying, so damn hard, not to think about it he aasks Jade, "You got any valium in your bathroom by the by?"
"The only location that we'd be allowed to go to is here," Landon says of the Marchant estate, "Or the Lesters." Because despite being eighteen-years-old, they still listen to what their big brother. "That said..." He looks to the others now, "If what you all said about Amy is true, that some of the vampires are afraid of her. And you know, the whole werewolf thing," Yeah, that's not something he'd brought up to Morrison. "Aside from the security here, the Lesters with the Lester clan protecting it... on a full moon night, sounds like a good bet IF Morrison and Karl," Yeah, yeah, they call their other dad by his first name with the lack of respect they have for the man, "Allow for it." Of course, he's giving Lucas this concerned look, "Some might need to be sedated, or else have the place barricaded enough that, maybe there's some room to move. One other. With a lot of Lesters watching over the place."
When talks of the other families is brought up, it's difficult to tell what anyone can do exactly! "If what the Thistles say is true, then they talk to ghosts." Which he still thinks is weird but Witches, Werewolves and Vampires! Oh my! "And like Thea and I brought up. We... get someone to do the dangerous task of spying on the vampires, find who works for them. The way our family used to work for the elder vampire back in the day... I mean, I'm all for hiring a P.I. to do that rather than send out other kids or the newspaper team. Maybe we can find a cop who is willing to help." Yes, he promised that it wouldn't be Lucas or himself and too dangerous a job for any the other teens to do. "Convincing them to do that though?" He shrugs.
Meezer hops off Lucas' lap and stretches, first leaning forward, then backwards, butt in the air. Then he hops on a vacant patch of couch and grooms. It's no easy task looking as good as Meezer does. He's gotta keep that fur gleaming. Jade gets to his feet and ducks into his bathroom, then he comes out with a pill and a glass of water. "Here you go, man."
He reclaims his spot, and Meezer comes over to headbonk him. He pets the cat, scritching his ears. "We need to find out what everyone can do. Spear says his family can talk to dead people, and I believe him. We have resources other people don't have. I joke when I say being rich is a superpower, but... We can outfit every group, no matter how we end up splitting up, if we have to. Multiple safe places."
To Lucas, he says, "The house didn't get attacked, did it? I was there in the cemetery, when it went down. I heard motorcycles revving and got the fuck out of there. I went to the Thistle house. Hector and Cash joined me there later, but the vampires didn't follow."
Transferring her coffee cup to her left hand, Mona offers Lucas the right at the mention of truce. "'course."
"One thing that comes to mind, all things being equal? That maybe it's a good idea to have the people who are fending off the call themselves staying at another's home, rather than their own. This isn't intended to subject anyone to additional risk, but those affected would all be most likely to consider allowing them in. If that permission has no solid ground, because you aren't a resident, that helps keep everyone safer. Another reason to be sure everyone has an emergency kit."
She takes in a breath. "It's not immediately safer in the moment for the people watching them, but it's something," she notes, adding, "Watched Arthur try to gnaw right through Zane's hand trying to call out to them. After bolting for the door, and everyone charging after him." There's a tiny wince; she's still wearing some impressive bruises from her own failed attempt at a body-block. "Right out into the yard. Right before the laughing started from somewhere... up." Little wonder she's upset, and not letting Zane out of her sight. He may as well be the fourth triplet, to Mona's general reckoning, and with how often he's seen with the trio.
"Don't want to see you in a hospital. Or anyone. Was more thinking about sedatives," like the valium, "or maybe deciding to take a brief foray to one of the houses out of town for a night of the call here or there over the next few months. If somebody's not doing very well, taking them out of range has to be an option we consider, and it's not like we can't cook up a proper cover story, if it comes to that. Maybe we're lucky, and the call only extends so far as that 'twelve mile radius' that Mr. Chen talked about. It's one of the things I mean to ask him when we have the chance."
"Right now, it's a waiting game, in part." Her brow furrows mildly, and she glances back to Landon. "Maybe ask Sky? Much as Silvio isn't the most reliable of witnesses, he is Sky's brother, too. That counts for something, especially with Arthur and Zane and the rest of us willing to offer accounts if necessary."
Lucas shakes the hand offered. There's teh truce. Where Lucas seems to be concerned? Done. Nodding slowly he pauses and the truth surfaces and for a small moment he's silent and very still. Calmly he says something that might only make sense in the proper weight and context as those in this room when he says, "I... almost hurt Landon." There's the heavier pause in teh subtlties on his face. Tactical reason as his go to he informs, "That shit is definiately not something I want to spend an eternity knowing I did." Looking to all three of them and stopping on his brother says, "And not something that's happening again." He gets a nod.
Looking to Jaden he takes the pill and laughs, "It wasn't for right now but this is good to have on hand in case." The clarification of the situation he says "Well I was inside studying at teh time, btut that's valuable invormation. Maybe they can talk to the dead and find some of those former victims? They'd be witness to their own demise. maybe give us a better idea what to prep for?" His pager on his hip, yeah the one in the read translucent case because red is awesome, goes off with a VZZZZZZZT. It's been doing that not constantly but with more regularity. "We got a guy that can get us sedatives. On newspaper with us and? don't forget to have us ask Mr. Bloomquist for use of the school camerasand get as many of those to folks as possible. We can develop those on prem, but it might give us solid evidence to help us get more support from adults or collaborate things we find with one another. Resources, we can ask to use em." There's a pause and he takes the glass of water from Jade and pops teh valium. "I need to make a call and jsut sleep unntil nine. I still ahve that Econ paper to finish for monday and I'm only half into it."
Lucas' losing control is not something that either of them had ever really brought up. Nor that the same happened with Thea. So when his brother brings it up now, Landon knows that he means business. He doesn't even need to say anything, just giving an understanding nod over to his twin. Next time, it might be Landon who needs to be held down. That much is on his mind now too.
Landon even wears a stony face when Lucas says that he was studying in Silver's room.
That's when Lucas reminds him of the cameras, "That's right. I was hoping that someone would've called the cops at the Reeds to make sure they witness the attack, but I know just how chaotic it was there. That said, if we want anyone to believe us, we need to some evidence. Video recordings would be ideal."
Then when Mona brings up Sky, Landon nods, not really knowing the guy. "I hope for all of our sakes that he'll listen to Mr. Bloomquist, despite... him being known as the boy who cried wolf himself." That's how Landon feels like right now in the eyes of some of the adults. "I can only hope that goes better than the meeting Silver had with her grandmother."
Then he watches Lucas pop that valium, dark eyes in silent observation. He has that 'You gonna be OK?' look and he'll most likely follow shortly, but he'll give Lucas his space for now. "Anyway, we'll talk to Morrison, see if he thinks some of us, though I'm gonna admit, it's probably going to be Lucas and myself and the other Lesters, unless we can convince him otherwise, could use the Lester house for the next full moon."
Jaden smiles at Lucas. "I also have ketamine. It's a horse tranquilizer." Then his expression grows more serious. He gets just what it means, that Lucas almost hurt Landon. "We're going to make sure that it doesn't happen again," he says. He keeps petting Meezer, who kneads his chest and purrs. "Take care, Lucas," he adds.
Looking to Mona and Landon, he says, "For now we can put together those kits and list our possible locations. If there's a twelve mile radius, maybe it's not the worst idea to take an overnight trip to Vegas or something." It's only two and a half hours away, two the way Jade drives it. "The more options the better, you know?"
There's no hesitation in the shake -- much as Mona seems to let that temper steam, she's clearly happier to let it go again. "I think a lot of things happened the other night that none of us would ever have to experience again," she confirms with a slow and steady nod, wincing at the description he offers of some of what transpired here at the house. "We were up the whole time from school, Reeds', school, Mr. Chen's, then... back here. Crashed out hard when we got back." Well, there was crashing involved, in her defense! It was just into old costumes and then, the floor. Not that she's saying that much out loud.
"I think we have a few cameras around the house. Not the big production style ones, but I recall needing one a few years ago for a drama video production. It's likely still somewhere in my room. I wouldn't be surprised if Mom had one, too. Silver's always been the photography girl, her and Lennox, anyway. They'll have still gear on hand, and a good idea of how to best use it. Pretty sure Cash crews for the news show, and he might know what to do regarding film."
Lucas turns on heel at the door finger in teh air, "Oh and we need to check a calendar to make sure *prom* doesn't fall on a full moon. That happens? Jade we got some hook up for a private party we can gate with 'welcome rules'? we should think about that a now because odds are high it'll be in the open area of English Village like classes before us and stuff. So... yeah. We don't want a Buffy the Vampire Slayer scenario if we cna help it."
"That's the least that we can do anyway," Landon will admit, since much of their work is done at home as of late. "Work on putting together kits in preparation. Perhaps when the gang's all here working on the yearbook." The twins' suite has turned into newsies central after their house arrest. Another lone look is given Lucas. It's obvious that he's worrying for his brother, though when the Prom is brought up, that at least brings a hint of a smile to Landon's lips. "Always thinking of what's important." He sends a wink Lucas' way. "That is a good idea. Finding a secure place to host the Prom. Which might be held here." The Marchant house was large enough and had a ball room.
"At some point, we'll need to speak to Mr. Chen again. See if he's ready to give us more info that'll be of us. But for now, pack together these kits, go searching through our own library for anything important. Maybe see if there's other hints about how our ancestors handled things. Find decent and securable safehouses for full moon and..." This part he's doubtful of, but they don't have many options, "Try to get the ear or someone," Through Silvio or not, "Who might be able to help sniff out the Revenants." He's getting used to using that word.
"I can hit the books tonight," Jade says. "I'm already done with my homework." He may be grossly irresponsible and spends too much time partying, but somehow he still manages to do well in school. Some people just test well. "If the Thistles are sensitive to spooky stuff, maybe they can sniff these guys out." He scritches Meezer's ears, getting happy squinty face from the cat. "Prom here would be pretty cool. Safe, certainly. Elegant. I was thinking we should throw another party before prom anyway. It'll be a good chance to talk plans with a large number of people, plus it'll be a party."
"Prom is happening somehow, even if it means we all have a party here during the day and have to hand out stakes along with the tiaras," Mona notes without missing a beat in confirmation.
"I mentioned getting together here to a few people to hopefully get more people on board with what's going on, and get a little more clarity on what's been happening. 'Movie Night' has never really been a problem to get by Father, anyway." Lot of vampire movies, for 'research'. "That may help. We could ask to make a weekend of it, starting Friday night."
When Jade announces that he'll start looking through the many tomes in the family library, Landon chimes in, "I'll come with." He has work to do, including the newspaper and yearbook stuff, but the gang weren't coming in til later, so he had some time to kill. It seemed like a good meeting after all. With a clap of his hands, he turns back to Mona, feeling no animosity after their argument earlier, "Looks like we got a plan."
"Plan is good," Mona agrees easily, seemingly relieved that the tension appears to have passed. To say she's been high strung over the past few weeks would be an understatement. "Hopefully, we'll be able to find out more information. What Mr. Chen said about some of the adults knowing about the threat has me a little curious -- but I'm not aiming to push it. I have to give a few things a try that might work for restraints without getting too uncomfortable, up in the workroom." By which she means her bedroom, but hey, it's mostly costume shop with a bed anyway.
Jaden nods and says, "Sure thing." He nudges Meezer off his lap. When Meezer meows, Jade says, "No, you don't get to come with us. You're not allowed in the library." Old tomes make great scratchers. In the cat's opinion anyway. He's earned himself a lifetime ban. Jade gets to his feet. He gives Mona a hug and tells her, "It's going to be okay." He's not rich in useful life skills, but he does give good hugs.