Supernatural Street Preacher

Santa Monica Boulevard
Bright neon signs bathe the sidewalk in harsh light, and each side of the strip
is lined with bars and nightclubs ranging between high class establishments to
buildings that are little more than densely populated Raves. The street is
packed at any time of day with people and cars, making parking an issue for most
anyone. The occasional crowd of Paparazzo can be seen here or there, hoping to
get shots of some well known celebrity coming out of one of the sleazier
establishments. Continuing to the east and west, traffic travels down single,
congested lanes, looking only a bit wider than the sprawling sidewalks, and the
street lamps leave plenty of illumination in the night. Between many of the
buildings, dark alleys offer places for the less savory population of the strip
to do their business with mild obscurity.

* Exits *
north - Joe's Pool Hall (Avg NPCs: 18)
east - Intersection of Santa Monica and North Fairfax
south - The Burning Fortune - CONDEMNED
west - Santa Monica Boulevard
(Barrabus) A white fleshed, hunched creature with piercing green eyes is standing in the middle of the street, addressing a horrified crowd (App 0) [ Intimidating ] || (IC)

As the creature manages its way down to the pavement, the crowds literally enter euphoriatic terror, even the most jaded turning immediately with screams and shouting while the masses of bodies part and scramble away from Barrabus. Police sirines are distant now, and struggling against the surge of people. Calls of 'Devil', 'Demon', and 'Help me God' are quite numerous in the buzz, but one thing is certain - if the riots of Santa Monica, kidnappings, and voilent crimes of LA have settled fear into the hearts of the citizens, this is certainly the worst that the stretch of street has seen. People are trampled, thrown, and snuffed between the rush of terrored footfalls and movement, and there seems little call for the emptiness of the area at least fifty feet from the Nosferatu.

Pausing in his steps, the creature lets his arms fall to his sides, his smile fading and turning into a faint frown. Muttering to himself for a moment, the beast looks towards the ground and shakes his head before turning his glowing gaze back onto the fleeing throng. "Heretics!" he cries out over the sounds of screaming, hands clenched into fists. "I offer you salvation and you flee before me! I will win your devotion, however, for the Sun easily satisfied, whether by adoration or sacrifice."

The crowd doesn't seem encouraged by the words that are shouted, at least not to do anything more than run for their lives. The sidewalks have cleared for the most part, many taking shelter in some of the local buildings and shops, but quite a number can be seen ripping their way down the paths that extend on either side of the strip. The whirl of sirines are louder now, the vision of a few cruisers from the east end of the strip going as slowly as possible in the near jammed traffic and weaving pedestrians. A few figures lay about the area, creased with blotches of bloody footprints and a knife wound or two, though the result is much less dramatic than one would assume from the number of fleeing figures and doomsday screaming.

Glowing eyes darting towards the cruisers, the creature hisses as he recognises the metal monsters. Without a word, the beast darts a few yards and snatches up a corpse, carrying it easily under one arm. Continuing with his awkward gait, the creature begins to head towards a sewer grate, lowering himself almost horizontally and scampering over the pavement with his free hand.

Finally peeling herself away from the brick wall of a building she took cover against, the rather average woman wearing an old style Confederate frock coat shakes her blonde head from side to side. "I dunno what in the sam hill that varmint's a doin', but he ain't up to no good," the broad-shouldered woman mutters to no one in particular as she rolls her shoulders and cracks her neck from side to side. "So's up to me to find out," she adds with a small, close-lipped smile as her metal-plated motorcycle boots plod along the pavement. As she walks, she keeps her head down and her arms crossed beneath the coat with her hands at her side, her greenish eyes narrowing as she easily follows the beast.

Throwing the metal covering aside, Barrabus drops down into the sewers with practiced grace, using the corpse to break his fall with a crunch and a popping sound. With a hungry growl, the beast sinks his yellow chompers into the neck of the corpse and begins to suck forcefully, blood trickling down his chin. Barrabus continues to drink as he steps off the corpse, the creature dragging the body through the muck with his teeth as he continues down one of the passages.

Moving as silently as the night itself, Tazia eases herself into the sewers, landing in a four-limbed crouch without so much as a splash or a clatter. A wide grin now splits her thin lips, displaying those wickedly sharp eyeteeth to the encrouching, stinky darkness around her. Absolute silence follows the athletic figure as she creeps along, following Barrabus without much trouble at all and keeping her distance all the while.

Collapsing into a heap with a splash, the creature begins to noisily bite chunks out of the corpse's scalp, leaving red stains around his mouth and dribbling pieces of the carcass over his chest. As the body falls from the beast's hands into the filth, a long tongue extends from his wormy lips and runs over his face, cleaning up every last scrap of corpse. The tongue darts away again, lashing out one last time to moisten his glowing eyes before disappearing altogether. Breathing a sigh, the seems to lose itself in thought for a few moments.

Eyes accustomed to the darkness crinkle at the corners with the vicious smile as Tazia slips through the sewers, positioning herself just behind Barrabus at all times. Her arms are once against crossed in front of her, her hands hidden beneath the folds of her coat at her sides. "Now, what I'm thinkin' is that if you keep on causin' such a difficulty topside, them boys in blue are liable tah give you one'a them fanciful Chicago overcoats. Ya know, the sorts with the nails an' the holes, an' the direct line to that glowin' eye in the sky," comes a lilting Southern voice, Tazia's body tensing for action if need be as she speaks, though she doesn't advance quite yet.

Whirling around quickly, the creature drops onto all fours in the muck, peering into the darkness with glowing green eyes. One hand rises off the floor of the sewer, coated in slime, and slides to his hip, hidden by the folds of his robe. "Who…" he venture's quietly, eyes narrowing into bright green slits. Backing away slowly, the creature seems mighty suspicious, his yellow fangs bared.

With every move the Nosferatu makes, Tazia matches it, one watery footstep at a time. Her head turns as she speaks, encouraging the stone tunnels to produce their echoes in abundance as she speaks in a normal conversational tone, perhaps even a bit cheerful regardless of the situation, "Jus' someone who's kinda concerned abouts all the ruckus you was causin'. Dunno if mebbe you was conked on the noggin one too many times, cowpoke, but bringin' 'tention to yerself ain't no way to go about huntin'. Like they always say, the squeaky wheel gets the grease.. 'cept in this, that grease's comin' out the barrels of a shotgun aimed right fer yer craggy head."

Rising from the muck, the creature drips with filth, his eyes still slitted suspiciously as he looks the woman over. "That up there was not about hunting, it was about salvation. The cities of this country are filled with the horrible lies spread by the Christian worshippers, the same that brought pain and destruction to my people years ago. My subtle methods do not seem to be getting through to them, I needed to take a drastic measures, unfortunately these worms are not worth talking too… death by the sword is the only way they will serve my lord in any kind of meaningful way." he says, disdain written all over his face as he speaks in heavily accented tones.

"Well, shoot, why don't you go and start up one'a them tent revivals for yerself?" the oddly unperturbed woman responds, her head cocking to one side to stare boldly up at the beast in front of her. "Lots less messy than yer current preachin' and hollerin', that's fer damned sure. Ain't gettin' ya nowheres fast, but closer to the Big Sleep, if ya reckon what I mean." Tazia seems content to stay where she is, still with her arms idly crossed in front of her and her swamp green eyes focused on Barrabus. "The big fishes don't take too kindly to crazies stirrin' up the breathers. And worms sure do a lotta good, ya know. Make the plants grow better, so's little critters can eat them, and bigger critters eat them. Worms are kinda necessary."

Remembering himself, the creature pulls himself up to his full six and a half feet in height, looking down at the woman. "Who are you, traveller? You must have had a reason for following me." he inquires, raising a mangled eyebrow to the lean woman. "Is it naive to believe that you may have been stirred by my words?" With a hint of dramatic flair, the creature grips his sheet-cloak and throws it around him majestically.

A hoot of laughter precedes all of Tazia's words as she too pulls herself up to her full height, though it's a much less impressive five feet and six inches, "I reckon ya can call it stirred by yer words, handsome. I was done stirred to come alla way down here 'n make sure ya ain't doin' anymore harm tah them warm bodies upstairs," she pulls one hand from the folds of her coat to jerk a thumb towards the ceiling of the tunnel. "So what kinda reverand are ya? Baptist? Mormon?" she cocks a tawny eyebrow at the Nosferatu, staring up at him as if he were on her level, and not rising a foot above her.

Pausing for a moment, the creature tilts his head to the side, examining the tawny haired young lady a little more closely. His expression doesn't seem quite as suspicious anymore, the beast furrowing his brows before replying. "Huitzilopochtlian." he says simply, the difficult word rolling effortlessly off his tongue. "And not so much a preacher… more a prophet, and you still haven't answered my question. Who are you?"

Executing a very gentlemanly bow as best as she can, with one arm out to her side, Tazia still doesn't take her wary gaze off of Barrabus. "Well since I kinda barged into yer house, it's the least I can do," she laughs again uproariously, holding the bow still as she goes on, "I'm Tazia, still pretty green when it comes tah this place, but I'm sure I'll get the hang a this ole concrete jungle lickity-split." She then rights herself, standing up straight again and crossing her arms just as before. "So whatta people call ya besides," she screams here in a high pitched voice, as if that were a name and not just some noise, "or 'holy buck futtery, what in the tarnation is -that-'?"

Watching the bow quietly, a faint smirk comes to his lips as he admires the woman's gesture. "The Spanish called me Barrabus, the one set free when their prophet was crucified." he says in a faintly cheerful tone. Offering a faint nod at his own introduction, the creature seems to relax slightly. "Now, one more question. You must have had a reason for following me here. You mentioned something of protecting the cattle from my attempts to save them, what exactly did you mean?"

"Hoo, that is a helluva lot worse'n callin' someone Jezebel, just so's ya know," the amiable blonde grins at Barrabus, flashing her extended fangs with the gesture. "Well ya see, corpses ain't gonna learn nothin'," she nods her head in the direction of the meal that used to be a living, breathing person not but a short while ago. "So yer preachin' to the dead. The truly dead. That jus' makes no kinda sense to me. Ya ever hear that ole proverb that ya can catch more flies with honey than ya can with vinegar, handsome?"

Staring at the woman for a moment, the creatures expression turns completely blank. "No." he says simply and without humour. Turning away from the woman for a moment, the creature shrugs his shoulder to pull his cloak around him a little tighter before glancing back at her with deep green eyes. "What do you propose then, hrmm? If these children cannot gaze upon a god without going insane with terror, what course should I take to carry the word to them?"

Going still and silent as only the dead can, Tazia continues to stare right back at Barrabus as she thinks, her lips pursing together to prove that the little hamster is running its heart out on the wheel in her head. "I'm guessin' ya shouldn't be showin' yerself on the television, so none of that televangelist horseshit for ya, but ya know if ya make a good impression on a few people, they'd be goin' 'round preachin' to their pals about yer message and bring them ta hear ya talk, and see ya talk. It's all abouts colorin' things all nice and pretty for'em, then get to the ugly stuff after ya got'em reeled in. Ain't that the way them biblethumpers do it? Mebbe ya can go door to door even? Just hafta wear some sorta bag on yer head or somethin'."

Chuckling slightly, the creature reaches out and places a taloned hand on the young woman's shoulder, a faint smile coming to his features. "I must admit I understood only half of what you said, it is clear that you know much more about this world than I…" he says quietly, a calculating glint in his eye. With an appraising look his eyes move over the young woman once again, his wormy tongue darting out over his teeth. "Would you be willing to do this for me? Become my disciple, to borrow a word from the christian texts, and spread the word of the sun god?"

Utter confusion filters across Tazia's face as she stares up at the brute, no sign of fear within her demeanor even if she is looking at him askance. "So lemme get this straight… you," she nods towards him with a bob of her head, "worship a -sun- god??" The incredulousness of her voice rises with every word, culminating in a whoop of laughter. "Yer pullin' mah leg, ain't cha? This some sorta hazin' ceremony fer the new broad in town?" Olive green eyes sweep across Barrabus' face as her laughter dies away, "Well I'll be… yer serious!" she exclaims while lifting only one of her hands from her side, patting Barrabus' hand where it resides on her shoulder. "Now, don't go takin' all personal, but me'n the sun.. well, alla our sort and the sun.. jus' don't quite meet eye tah eye anymore, ya follow? How long's it been since ya seen yer god up there in the sky?"

As the young woman begins to laugh, Barrabus reacts with a scowl, removing his hand from her shoulder. "Of course I am serious, the sun is the giver of life to all, we were all born from him and that is where we will return. When those who have turned their eyes from him return to worship, all those that have been cursed as demons are will be forgiven. This is my trial, and I shall not lose faith." he says, no humour in his voice as he peers at her questioning expression. "And though I have not seen the face of the Father for many years, and though his gaze causes me pain, I will remain true to my oaths." Something in her expression causes the creature to pause, raising an eyebrow with a perplexed expression. "You… have you been cursed like me? Have you been made a demon?"

Both of Tazia's hands now lift from where they were at, her fingers outspread and her palms facing Barrabus to show she's currently unarmed, "Now, don't go gettin' yer back all up, baby. I ain't meanin' tah hurt yer feelin's 'n pride. Jus' took me a lil by surprise is all. I done never expected one of us tah seriously be worshippin' the thing that can hurt us most." Slowly, she lowers her hands back to their opposite sides, her broad shoulders lifting in a shrug, "I dunno. I dun see mahself as bein' cursed or hexed or somethin'. I got changed, but everythin' changes with time anyways. Hoo doggies, I been called worse'n a demon, but I never really sat down and thought abouts it too much. Ya ain't no demon, handsome. Yer big'n strong and ya ain't the prettiest pair a legs in this town, but ya ain't no demon."

Staring blankly for a moment, it seems as though the creature is almost looking through the young woman, considering her words. "If we are not cursed, but changed, then… what are we?" he says quietly, almost to himself. His gaze returning to the young woman, Barrabus seems somewhat perplexed, eyebrows furrowing and meeting in a mass of wrinkles. "How did this happen to you?"

"I got waylaid by a crazy ole injun. Shot'im up somethin' fierce, but he's a wily bastage," Tazia replies with a fond note to her voice, even ending the explanation with a wild grin which only once more displays her fangs. "We're just another kinda beast livin' in this world. Sorta like two-legged cougars livin' amongst the hares. Sure we're dangerous, but we dun hafta kill'em. And the less we kill'em, the less they wanna all band together and kill us. Ya see? It's that whole circle'a life mumbo-jumbo," she explains while waving one hand in a circle to emphasize her point. "Why do ya think they get all blissed out when we take what we need from'em? We'renot supposed tah be killin'em. Ya do that an' it thins tha herd too much."

His tongue running over his crooked teeth again, the creature keeps his heavily lidded eyes on the ground, something obviously on his mind. Without much warning, he turns away from the young woman and pauses, ankle deep in sewer muck. "You've given me much to think about…" he says quietly, a gauntleted hand emerging from the folds in his robe and moving to his cowl. Delicately, he raises it, casting his face in shadow but for the glowing eyes. "I feel I should retire, I need time to analyse everything that's happened tonight.:

Sauntering up to the looming Nosferatu, Tazia reaches a hand out and pats him on the shoulder, "Get some rest, big fella. Plenty'a tomorrows for our sorts. Just kinda try tah keep yer horns tucked in, capice? Don't want nothin' tah happen tah that pretty face," she grins widely, either uncaring or forgetful about the pointed teeth she flashes him. "I'll be 'round if ya wanna talk more, but there ain't no way I'm gonna listen if ya keep makin' the breathers crap themselves," she adds firmly, setting her jaw stubbornly as she crosses her arms again and peers up at him brazenly.

Nodding quietly in silent agreement, the hideous bastard shrugs her hands off him. Giving her one last glance the creature pulls his cloak a little closer before hunching and scampering along the bottom of the sewer tunnel, eyes leaving a trail of green light before fading eventually.

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