Welcome To The Watch

Cast: date: 'August 24, 2012'
place: 'The Crow And The Caper'
participants: 'Daniel, Imogen'
synopsis: 'Daniel finds his way to Imogen''s safehouse. She is totally comforting and encouraging.'
log: "Friday night at the Crow and the Caper is a… loud time. The front lobby is mostly empty, except for Imogen sitting behind the counter, but the archway leading to the common room lets in chatter and music, laughter and shouting. It is possible the customers are drinking a little too much, since it is the start of the weekend.\n\nImogen doesn't seem to be bothered by it, sitting on her stool apparently doing the books. Mostly, she just seems tired. Long day, perhaps.\n\n The older man who steps in through the door definitely doesn't seem the type to be in here. Dressed in a fine pinstriped suit, his pencil moustache and slicked back hair are the very essence of \"finely groomed\". He's definitely out for a reason, though, with a doctor's bag in one hand. With the other, he adjusts his tie, looking around the bar with fascination.\n\n Slowly, looking a little lost, he wanders into the fray, asking the couple at the nearest table, \"Excuse me, do you know of a…\" He pauses, glancing at his palm. \"Eye-mo-gehn, here?\"\n\nLooking up from her notebook, Imogen lifts an eyebrow as she looks the man over. And it only raises higher when he opens his mouth. \"Nope,\" she answers first, one hand opening a locked drawer while the other closes the book in front of her. \"But there's an Imogen.\"\n\nThe numbers are slipped away, the drawer closed, and she turns back toward him, hands folded on the desk between them. \"And that'd be me. How can I help you? Room? Dinner?\"\n\n Daniel blinks once, and smiles widely for a moment when Imogen turns back, making the outside of his moustache turn upwards. \"Oh, terribly sorry then! Imogen. Never been good with names. Dreadfully sorry. Ah…\" He shifts his bag to his other hand, extending a thin hand to hers. \"The name is Daniel Regal. I'm your new… coworker? Yes, I believe coworker is the word. I was told not to say more until we were in private.\"\n\nThe apology gets a slight upward curve at a corner of her lips, and she nods softly. His careful wording, though, that gets her attention. \"Ah. This way.\" slipping off her stool, Imogen leads Daniel toward a smallish side door labeled Office.\n\n\"Sil. Front desk,\" she says as she steps into the office, nodding the other woman out. 'Sil' does just that with a nod, not seeming to find it too odd to be reassigned abruptly. Once the woman is gone, Imogen gestures Daniel in. \"Take a seat, if you like.\"\n\n Daniel slips his hand into his pocket, glancing once over his shoulder at the inn before following Imogen into the back, his doctor's bag swinging softly against his leg as he walks.\n\n In the next room, he looks around. \"Hmmm, much obliged, yes. Thank you. It's been a long day.\" After a bit of deliberation, he takes a seat in one of the chairs near the door, his doctor's bag resting on his lap. The older man smiles up at her with a tinge of excitement, like a kid on his first day of school.\n\nShutting the door behind them, Imogen sits as well. Instead of a chair, though, she pulls herself onto the edge of the desk. \"So Daniel. What is it you do?\" She may be ill-defined, but she is also serious. \"You're… I haven't seen you before.\" Apparently unable to sit still, she reaches for a pencil to fiddle with between her fingers. \"Oh, and you're not going to pull some mojo on me, are you? That's off limits in my place.\"\n\n Daniel smiles. \"Oh, of course. Further introductions. Ahem. Well, I studied surgery at the King's College London School of Medicine. After that, I earned my residency at the Royal London Hospital and practiced in the trauma and emergency care centre for 15 years. However, a disagreement with one of the doctors led to me quitting.\" His smile falters into a mild frown of displeasure. \"Hmm. However, since then I've been a practicing mortician at the Quiet Pines mortuary just on the outskirts. Very nice area, much more relaxing than the hospital. Much quieter. However, now… I suppose I'm a practicing mortician for The Watch!\" He brightens back up.\n\n He looks at her in bafflement at her later remarks. \"Forgive me, I'm not sure I know what you mean. Mojo? I promise you, I do not practice voodoo.\" His fingers drum against the top of his bag.\n\n\"Quieter,\" Imogen repeats, a slower smile coming to her features. Amused, perhaps, but it is a mild expression. \"So you cut up the things that come out of there, yeah? That's not so bad, I guess. I hope not to many of them get back up once you've got them.\" Although, she doesn't seem to think that scenario too farfetched.\n\n\"I just meant… Um. If you're Touched, or whatnot, just… not in here. Although, that goes for voodoo, too, come to think of it.\" That pencil taps a little faster as she speaks, but once she notices, she presses her palm over it on the desk. \"What can I do for you? YOu need a place to stay?\"\n\n \"Oh no, never. I would pity the things that try to get up after I'm done with them.\" Daniel frowns deeply for a moment, possibly perturbed by that thought. He rubs at his clean-shaven chin.\n\n He tilts his head at her, still baffled. \"I'm sorry… Touched? Is this another codeword? I'm afraid I haven't been entirely briefed on all this yet.\" As her pencil tapping speeds up, his finger drumming does as well, unconsciously. And it stops when she does, the owner smiling warmly. \"I'm currently in the market for a cot of some kind, yes that would be lovely. But most importantly, if I'm to be dissecting monsters for you, I will need to scout out a laboratory. I was told you'd be very helpful in that?\"\n\n\"Oh, you're very new, aren't you?\" Imogen shifts to cross her legs there on the desk and she rests her elbows on her knees. \"Touched are… what we call people who've been to the Gloom and come back. They're a bit… changed, but still human. Some of them go mad. Most, even, you might say. But some can keep it together. The real problem is that the Others, those… things you cut up, they come for them, to try to get them back and the last thing I want is those monsters in my place, so no mojo in here.\"\n\nWith the lecture over, she drops her feet back to the floor, and she tilts her head a little. \"Yeah, I can help you find the right place for that sort of thing. Somewhere discreet. And probably soundproof. We've got little places all over London. I'll hunt one down for you. And as for a cot, if you can pay, you can have an actual room. If not, the safehouse is in the basement. The entrance is secret, only the Watch knows about it and you'll have to come and go quietly. But there are plenty of cots. And pretty good meals, if I do say so.\"\n\n Daniel's eyes slowly widen as Imogen goes on, though he puts a hand against his chest and lets out a breath. \"Oh! Goodness, that's good! I was afraid for a moment that what I dissected was one of these Touched. Others, you call them? Curious name… doesn't really capture their terrifying visage, if you don't mind me saying.\"\n\n \"Oooo, soundproof would be lovely! I doubt there will be much sound, save for a little humming. I like to hum when I work, keeps the mind engaged.\" He brightens. \"A safehouse! How dashing! And daring! Is it open for tours? Discreet tours, of course.\" He makes a zipping motion across his lips.\n\n\"Fear a thing, give it power. 'Others' works fine for me.\" Imogen replaces the pencil in the holder on the desk and moves to get up to her feet. \"Don't worry, if you had cut open a Touched, you've known it was human. Unless it was a shifter, I suppose.\" Comforting. \"If you thought of it as a monster from a nightmare, it wasn't human.\"\n\nShe nods for him to follow her again as she leads the way toward a door in the floor. She has to pull back a rug to get to it, but she yanks up the trap door to reveal a set of stairs into a darkened basement. She waves toward it unceremoniously. \"This way, if you want to have a look.\"\n\n Daniel hefts his doctor's bag, standing at the edge of the stairs and looking down into the darkness in trepidation. \"Not the most convenient…but that is the price we pay for safety.\" Tucking his bag under his arm, he awkwardly starts to descend the ladder, glancing up briefly at her when he's halfway down.\n\n\"In my experience, convenient isn't quiet.\" Imogen comes down as well, leaving the door above open. She flicks on a light that tints the mostly empty room in a yellowish light. \"Don't touch the safe, that's for the people above. Don't do anything weird, just… pretend like you're not here when you're here.\"\n\nMusic and laughter from above trickle through the floorboards, muffled but present. \"The noise only gets bad when they decide to dance up there.\" She moves to the row of cots to pull one out. \"If the door is locked, my room is upstairs. Marked Master's. Knock anytime.\"\n\n \"Forgive me, I'm still getting used to the idea of secrecy. It's quite odd doing things I know I'll have to hide.\" He looks around the small room, nodding appreciatively. He even nods to the \"pretend like you're not here\" thing. Weird.\n\n He sets his bag down nearby, sitting on the cot and testing its springiness. \"Hmmm, this will do, I think. My goodness, it's like being back in college! Exciting! Thank you much for your help. Ah, might I trouble you in the morning for a bit of a crash course on this whole \"Touched\" and \"Gloom\" nonsense? I'm afraid I'm quite out of the loop.\"\n\nImogen looks him over, that tiredness deepening for a moment before she sits down on a corner of the cot herself. \"It's simple,\" she says, apparently not thinking it wise to wait until the morning. \"And complicated. The Gloom is another reality. Hell, Hades… we've always known it exists, and yet never knew just how real it was. As a people. But all those stories, the legends, the things that go bump in the night, that sort of thing. They're stories, but the Gloom is where they came from. Boogeymen, monsters, vampires, all that stuff that we know to fear but shroud in talltales, it all came from the Gloom. The Others, their individual horrors, they grew into the myths and legends of today. They're what's in the dark.\"\n\nHer hands run down her legs for a moment before she stands up, hand shifting to run through her hair. \"The Gloom calls to people. Dark alleys, abandoned buildings? You feel a pull to explore, and then you stumble into nightmares worse than you ever dreamed. So bad, that if you make it out, you can't even quite remember. It's too horrid. But the people that come out, they get a bit of the Gloom inside them. They carry it with them forever. And the Gloom wants us there, make no mistake. And don't do too much walking around at night alone.\" When her feet reach the stairs, she puts one foot on the first step and turns back to him. \"See you in the morning.\"\n\n When Imogen gets all serious on him, Daniel purses his lips with worry. He crosses one leg over the other, showing some black socks, and resting his chin in his hand. He listens quietly, seriously. \"That's… quite unsettling. VERY unsettling, in fact. Vampires? Hrm…\"\n\n When she gets up, he smiles and gives her a brief salute. \"Thank you for your time, Ms. Imogen. I won't bother you again until the morning.\"\n\n\"They're not really vampires. Garlic, stakes, all that? They just are where the stories came from. Someone sees them, tries to rationalize it, we get vampires.\" Imogen nods to the salute and turns to start up the stairs again.\n\n\"Good night, Mister Regal.\" Of course, once she shuts the door, the basement feels very lonely. But at least she left the light on.\n"

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