Time/Date: It is currently 13:22 Pacific Time on Sun Oct 30 2005.
Moon Phase: Currently the moon is in the waning New Moon phase (15% full).
Place: Harbor Park
Harbor Park -- The Meadow(#194RJ)
One of the last bastions of green left in the city, mottled and withered grass and weeds covers the earth like a badly stained carpet, with the construction work turning what is left into just bare dirt. The vegetation seems marginally healthier the further it is from the river and much healthier towards the central area of the park around the fountain. Construction work is ongoing here: a raised earthen berm about five feet tall is being built all around the park perimeter, with two breaks each at the Bridge Street entrance and the First Street end. Wooden posts are being erected at regular intervals all along the earthen wall, while tasteful iron gates and fences are being added at the entrances. Overpowering the scent of living vegetation are the exhaust fumes from a busy street to the west and an unpleasant stench from the Columbia River to the east. From the street view or river view, the park is now isolated, as if it existed apart from the city. People in tall buildings have an excellent view of any goings-ons for now, though. In the center of the park, a small glade of six tall trees and a flower bed surrounds the fountain.
The murky waters of the Columbia River flow swiftly along the east side of the park. Bracketing the park to the west is First Street and the city of St. Claire.
The park is, as so often, quiet. Even though it's getting towards the end of lunchtime this Sunday, nobody seems inclined to dally here or to spend any more time passing through than they have to. One exception is a young teenage boy who's leaning on the wall to the east, staring out over the river as though he expects to find inspiration in its murky depths. Or maybe he's just one of those teenagers who has nothing better to do than waste time this way.
Entering the park via the Bridge Street entrance is a brown-haired girl in her late teens. From her outfit, she looks like she's supposed to be jogging, but the best she's managing is a half-trot. She's not paying much attention to the surroundings, though once within the park she manages to up her desultory effort into something more approaching exercise. Soon, her course will bring her to the eastern edge of the park.
At a little over five foot tall and with a slim build, KL is hardly awe-inspiring on first sight. She appears to be around seventeen years old and still carries a teenager's air of disenchantment and irritation.
Her mid-length mousy-brown hair is today held in a neat plait that hangs down just below her shoulders, and is held at the end with a brown leather band. She would be quite attractive - in particular she has a very cute, upturned, nose - were it not for the sullen and aggressive set of her mouth and the hostility of her gaze. Her hazelnut eyes look out with disappointment and poorly hidden anger, as if the world were a holiday villa that didn't match the travel agent's description. Her skin is oddly pale, and on her right shoulder-blade a two-inch-square tattoo of a winged horse is visible. Physically, she's well proportioned, and her bare arms show a tight musculature that speaks of regular exercise.
She's got a habit of slouching and of leaning up against any available support. When she forgets to slouch, however, she moves with a surprising degree of grace and compact poise.
She is wearing a white T-Shirt which has a dirty brown mark across the middle, a pair of white cycling shorts, white sports socks and a pair of white trainers which have seen better days. There's a large bandage wrapped around her right calf.
Kevin Lockwood has now been in town for the better part of a year, and blends in pretty well with those who would outwardly seem to be his peers - he's taller than many of them, leaner than most, and perhaps a little more mature-looking than the average. His hair remains very dark brown, cropped quite short, and intermittently spiked with gel. As ever his face contains a long chin, large nose, heavy eyebrows and brown eyes. There's definite stubble on his chin and top lip these days, though it's unlikely that he has to shave every day.
As regards clothing, his usual style is a track-suit and running shoes, which sit well on his thin, athletic frame and obviously aren't just for show. Sometimes the track-suit top hangs open to reveal a green T shirt with Super Mario on the front of it, holding a Fire Flower, with the words: POWER UP! on it in big white blocky letters.
He's about five foot ten, much of it his long legs, as ever; sometimes, particularly when sitting down, he doesn't seem to know what to do with those legs, crossing them, tucking them under himself, swinging them sideways over the arm of a sofa, or a dozen other uncomfortable-seeming positions.
The river-watching boy isn't, perhaps, quite so sunk in his reverie as he seems. At any rate, he turns his head as the girl approaches, glancing at her idly. Then he does an almost comic double-take.
The girl in question is, however, largely oblivious to her surroundings, her gaze fixed on the floor in front of feet. Her path will cause her to pass about ten yards away from the boy that she hasn't even looked at yet.
Kevin detaches himself from the river wall and sets his legs in motion, choosing a path that will intersect with the girl's a little way along her trajectory and leave him walking alongside her.
OK. She's oblivious, but she's still an Ahroun Garou, and being intercepted is one of the things she is very aware of. Her head lifts and she casts a glance over at the boy moving towards her. On seeing him, she scowls deeply, no sign of recognition in her eyes. Then, with as much of a jump as if someone had goosed her bottom, she starts. Unfortunately, this causes her to lose her stride, and one foot hits the other and she heads for the floor. With some grace and athleticism, she turns what could be a sickening fall into something more like a combat roll, but it's still not very elegant. Or dignified.
"Oh gawd," the boy gasps in a semi-regretful tone. "Didn't mean to make you jump, KL. Are you okay?"
KL, for it is she, gets up careully, brushing muck from her right knee. "No. I'm tragically and mortally wounded. Or at least, my pride is. What the fuck did you think you were doing sneaking up on me like that?" The Fury folds her arms in a familiar gesture. "Oh, and Hi, how are you?"
Kevin looks very much as if he'd like to hug KL, but doesn't quite dare. "I'm just so completely glad to see you," he says. "Since Natalie left town I've not had any easy way of getting messages through to you. Frankly," he adds with a quick glance to make sure they're alone, which they are, "I'm just glad you're still even /alive/."
"Rumours of my death have been..." KL pauses. "Total fucking lies." She doesn't appear to be particularly angry, about anything, though her arms remain folded across her chest. "I've been busy, and a bit distracted. Should have looked you up to congratulate you, though."
"Congrat.... oh now you have to be kidding. Is it /that/ long since I saw you?" Kevin shakes his head in disbelief. "Damn, it is. Well, you know, it is just great to see your ugly mug again. There's been so much bad stuff gone down in the last few days."
"There has?" KL says, raising an eyebrow. "I've really been out of the loop. What's happened?" She looks concerned, then looks around the park, satisfying herself that they aren't going to be overheard.
Kevin starts counting off points on his fingers. "Tamara is dead," he begins. "Elanora of my tribe is dead. Grey is in disgrace, and Basil likewise, for frenzying all over people. Tu has lost an arm as a result. A bunch of Black Spiral Dancers decided to hold a human barbecue on the bawn. The revel was a complete disaster and we came close to losing everyone on it... including me." He's already used all the fingers on one hand and is onto the second. "Get the picture?"
KL nods slowly, her brow creasing into a frown. "Yeah. Got the picture. Fuck." She shakes her head. "Tamara dead? Fuck. Too many deaths recently. Way too many." She sounds weary, which is strange, as it's not her that's been doing the fighting. "Guess I'd better make sure I'm on the next revel, see if I can't prevent carnage." The grin that she manages with this is at least a fair effort, even if not, perhaps, as bright as it once was.
"The worst part," Kevin confides quietly, "is that it was Thomas Grey who killed her. He was hurt badly during the revel, lost control, tried to attack... Dakota, I think it was. Tamara sacrificed herself to save her. He took her throat out, neat as neat. I pray to Gaia I never have to see that again." No grin from Kevin in return for KL's.
"Yeah." The Fury Ahroun nods slowly. "It's easy to forget that the Wyrm is...in some sense... within us. And failing when you're combatting that is often very fatal." She's not pontificating or being particularly pretentious. "I... when I first got here, I thought this sept was really cool. But it's not. It's really dangerous, and we're not doing very well."
"You don't get to see the bits behind the scenes of any place until you've lived there a while and grown to know it well enough," Kevin points out. "I'm hoping very hard that some of the problems have been due to the top dog not doing anything very much, and now that Touch Deer is in command, that things will start returning to some semblance of control. Meantime, I'm keeping on patrol of my territory, and trying to wander round the city enough to keep an eye on things here as well in what spare time I have."
"Touch Deer is good people." KL agrees. "I'm glad he got alpha." She gives a little shrug. "I guess I need to decide what I'm doing too. I've been... always with an eye on making a getaway. It doesn't look like anything bad is going to happen, and I'm eighteen now, so I can't be legally...you know." Sudden topic switch alert. "How's life in Requiem?" Kevin pauses a moment before answering. "Brom is still Brom. Full of anger, full of strength, annoying as hell and yet the best pack alpha I could hope for." He smiles wryly. "I don't suppose I shall ever be anything but a disappointment to him, but he gives me something to aim for. Kenneth, Michael, meh, they're good guys. Neither of them easy to get to know but their hearts are in the right places. Dillen, he's good too. We fought back to back at the revel, like packmates should, and we were two of very few to come out of that fracas on our feet."
"Good." KL says, without vast amounts of warmth. Apparently she still doesn't think much of Brom. Surprise. "I probably should avoid pushing you for a fight, eh?" she says, raising an eyebrow and leaning forward slightly, weight pushing onto her toes.
One corner of Kevin's mouth twists very slightly upwards. "If you want a fight, I'm your wolf," he says, neither aggressively nor menacingly, but cheerfully enough. "But here's not really a good spot. I came here sorta hoping to run into Tommy Gun, who seems to have vanished. He used to hang out here a lot. I don't suppose you know anything about him? His own tribemates don't seem to."
"Not met him." KL says, shooting a glance around the park. "What is he? Gnawer? Fianna? And yeah, here's not a good place. But I do need to make up for those times I didn't punch you because you were a cub." More genuine grin this time, because threatening to deck someone is KL's version of friendly.
"Gnawer," Kevin confirms absently. "We can go back to my place and spar down in the cellar. As you may or may not remember, we who follow Fenris cannot turn down a fight. And anyway, I'd always spar with you if you wanted, because you've always been good to me."
"Can't turn down a fight? Really?" Anyone would think that KL...had _entirely_ heard of this fact. "Maybe later. Anything else new? And are you still at the house?" She finally unfolds her arms and kicks idly at the flooring.
Kevin mmmms in agreement. "Jeren moved out so I took over her room," he explains. "And Nat's room has Tu in it now... and Grey moved out as well, so Scratch has taken over his. All changed so much." He sighs. "But one thing's still the same, we still have the coffee machine, so let's get over there and we can brew one up before we get down to fighting. I don't think Fenris would object to that," he smiles.
"Nah, I think that's allowed. And I haven't actually asked you for a fight." KL reminds him. "Though I guess I've offered the opportunity, which counts." She pauses, and looks in the vague direction of the safehouse. "How far do you think it is, roughly?"
Kevin squints into the distance. "Ten, twelve blocks," he hazards. "Easy walking. Why, you got somewhere else you need to be?"
"Nope." KL takes a couple of steps towards the exit. "Not quite a sprint, is it? Want a headstart?" The fact that she's dressed in appropriate clothes and he isn't doesn't seem to have occurred to her.
Kevin snorts at KL. "At the risk of sounding like Brom, any follower of Fenris, be they his Get or not, needs no handicap in any contest."
"Right, fine." KL says, with a wave of her hand. As she takes off into a run, she sweetens the pot further, "Last one there owes the other...cookies."
Kevin bursts into a run himself. The necessities of Garou life have made his sprinting training sadly intermittent, and he's no longer verging on national competition standard, but as a sprinter he's still pretty damn fast, and over longer distances he's no slouch either. As they leave the park and start to pound along the sidewalk he seems to be overhauling the Black Fury quite steadily despite her having had several moments' start herself.
The Fury is both fit, and a practiced runner, but there's a difference between that and a properly coached athlete, even out of practice, and it's much to her chagrin that she, eventually, finds herself owing Kevin some cookies. Kevin is polite enough not to rub in his triumph over the Black Fury. "Okay," he simply says, "next time the coffee is ours and the cookies are yours. Come in, let's wind down, and catch up some more. There's a zillion and one other things happened as well as the major stuff I told you in the park."