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07/13/2007 9:48 AM

Check OOC for info.

07/13/2007 11:44 AM

The mountain loomed over John like the executioners ax over his victim. The Mountain seemed to have a life of its own. A personality like that of a sadistic killer, it challenged John to come, dared him to set foot on its soil.

John Orbon sat in his car at the base of the mountain in front of a little family owned Dinner. The sign read [i] Come on in [/i], obviously run by a quaint little family. John turned off his car and got out. He walked into the dinner, there were two other customers and a man behind the counter.

"Hey there stranger, what can I get ya" The man's voice was heartwarming and kind.

"Umm, no thank you, I just need a map"

"Sure thing stranger, I got one right here." The man reached behind the counter and pulled out a folded up map and handed it to John. "Where ya headed?"

John replied "I was invited to a Dinner Party by the owner of a......Merkan Manor"

The whole Dinner instantly went dead silent. The two other customers that were having a conversation stopped and stared at him wide eyed.

The man behind the counter said "Now stranger, you best be turning yourself around and scurrying off home" His tone had changed from a kind welcoming voice to a stone cold statement.

John stepped backward and out of the Dinner silently, a look of confusion. He walked fast over the parking lot and got into his car.

[i] The man must be trying to scare me, yeah thats it [/i]

On that thought, John unfolded the map and started up the mountain.

John approached a large mansion embeded in the side of the mountain. The winding gravel driveway wound up and stopped in the mansion courtyard. The Mansion was huge, much larger than anything John had ever seen.

When John stopped his car and got out, it began raining. John jogged through the courtyard of statues and flowers and then reached the front porch. He hadn't gotten too wet. He knocked on the front door with the door knocker.

07/13/2007 3:48 PM

Nina's battered black Beetle was pulled over as far as the narrow road would allow. She'd spent about ten minutes waiting to see if the road would widen, even a little, eventually giving up and pulling in tight to the verge.

A large fold-up map lay on the passenger sheet on top of a well-loved laptop as she scrutinised yet another map, this one a computer printout. Scowling at the paper- the ink had bled and run right through where, as far as she could figure, she was currently located- she pushed the larger map to the floor and flipped open the lid of the computer, tapping impatiently as she waited for it to hum to life.

The sound from the car's speakers was tinny, Mark Mothersbaugh's yowling only just heard over the ticking of the engine and the click of the cassette player. She'd given up on the radio abut twenty five miles back as the road had started to climb and the pines had grown taller.

Finally the screen flickered on and she opened the saved image of the map, saying a quick prayer of thinks to the invasive modern technology that set about capturing satellite images of even the most obscure of places. She zoomed in on the image, nodding with satisfaction as she saw a small '141' noted beside the road that appeared tiny even when magnified: she'd seen a small, half-covered sign a few miles back, on it the same numbers just visible.

Turning the laptop off once more she struggled to get the Beetle into first gear, swearing fluently before it finally engaged and the small car set off at a crawl up the steep incline. Eventually gathering enough moment she risked second gear, an unpleasant grinding sound coming from the engine at the rear. She flicked the windscreen wipers on as rain started to fall, the screech of the blades across the glass teeth-jarring, and rubbed the condensation from the inside with her palm.

Finally, the dark shape of a large house loomed out of the gloom and she pulled into the gravel drive, certain that it had to be the place. A car was already parked in the courtyard, and she could see a figure standing by the door. Leaving everything in the car she pushed the driver's door open and bolted for cover, as she came closer seeing that the figure was a red-haired man approaching early middle age, but still appearing fit and hale.

"Ah, hi. Ah... I got an invitation in the post..?"

Her voice rose at the end, making the statement more of a question, indicating her uncertainty.

[i]This has to be the right place[/i]

07/13/2007 6:27 PM

Evangaline was about to kill the driver of the little Volkswagon in front of her. Not only had the thing stopped eight miles back leaving a space about five inches thinner than her Jag could manuver, therefore leaving Evangaline skulking under the shadow of a massive pine behind the Beetle, she'd now gone through a second pack of cigarettes and had started on her third, smoking furiously. She did not like to be late.

When the Beetle finally did move, it was at the pace of a snail up the rain-swept incline. Evangaline's windshield wipers were moving faster than this car. She was seriously pondering if she had the horse power to drive [i]over[/i] the Beetle when a massive, Edwarian mansion loomed it's grey and weathered maw up out of the rain.
"Finally," she said out loud, tossing the filter of her fourth cigarette out the window. "Let's get this over with."

It took her a moment to park her much larger car beside the midget of a VW, and by the time she'd slid the key out of the ignition the driver of the Beetle, a young lady with a shock of pale hair, was already sprinting for the door of the house. Evangaline calmy stepped from her car, bringing a jet black umbrella to life with a decive 'pop!' She walked slowly up the drive, relishing the feeling of her four-inch stilettos digging into the gravel.

I got an invitation in the post..?"

The young lady stammered as Evangaline approached her and her ginger-haired companion on the porch. She cocked an eyebrow.
"You must be joking."

07/14/2007 12:35 AM

Jamie drives through alleys after alleys and streets after streets trying to find the darn mansion or manor or whatever it is.

'Why do the locals refuse to give me any information on the manor? And why do they ask me to turn back?' Jamie thought to himself a little frustrated as rain drops start to hit his windscreen of his old car his dad lend it to him.

Jamie's old car trots up a mountain. As Jamie reaches the summit of the mountain, a big building catches his eye. Jamie took out his letter of invitation and unfolded the letter.

"Yes! Found it!" he sighed a huge relieved as he shouted in his car.

He slowly park his car in the courtyard and turned off his ignition. As he slips on his amulet on his neck with one hand, he opens his car door with his free hand. As he locks his car, he look at the other cars and felt a little embarressed. The other cars are all modern cars and his is an old 60's or 70's car which he couldnt tell exactly. He quickly snapped back to reality and turn towards the pathway to the manor. He sees a few person at the manor door.

'Oh god, better hurry' he thought to himself as he started sprinting towards them.

As he reached the door step with the rest, he is relieved that he is not the only one wearing casual clothings.

"Hi all ! This is Merkan Manor, right?" Jamie asked politely with a smile.

[Edited by SapphireFrost on Saturday, July 14, 2007 12:38 AM]

[Edited by SapphireFrost on Saturday, July 14, 2007 12:41 AM]

[Edited by SapphireFrost on Monday, July 16, 2007 9:43 AM]

07/14/2007 6:13 AM

Already more people were showing up. There were 2 women and another Asian boy. No one had yet answered the door despite John's furious knocking.

[i] Strange, why would someone have a dinner party where no one knew each other?[/i]

John had never seen these people before and didn't think he had any reason to be affiliated with them.

"Well I think that introductions should come first, Im John Orbon" John said with no outward expression.

Just then, the rain pouring down by now, the front door opened. There was no one standing there to answer the door.

John stepped through the door, looking around cautiously. Lightning cracked and iluminated the otherwise dim lit room. There stood in the center, below a staircase, a tall man in a butlers uniform. He looked like a walking corpse, eyes sunken, cheeks high and in his face.

"Welcome to Merkan Manor" He said in a low an ominous tone "If you will follow me please" With that, he turned slightly and walked into a room to the right. As he opened the door he said "This is the library, please help yourself to a drink, the Master will be with you shortly" He turned and walked down another hallway and disapeared into darkness.

John stepped forward and walked into the library. The walls were lined with books, the two story library was filled. On a small table, there were glasses and a bottle of brandy. John walked over and poured himself a glass.

07/14/2007 12:18 PM

"This is your last warning Professor. Stick to the curriculum or find another job."
"I was merely trying to give another point of view. In the end the students will decide what to believe."
"You said Hercules was real person!"
"I said he may have existed. History is full of superhuman feats. Who are we to say what is fact and what is myth?"
"That's enough professor!"
"The students deserve to hear many points of view! How else can they grow?"
"You are dismissed!"

The door slammed behind him as he walked down the hall, his fists clenched at his sides. "Wow, the director really laid into you this time Nick." Professor Nelson was leaning against the wall waiting for her turn. "I'm almost afraid to go in there now."

"It's not you he's mad at. You'll be fine. What are you here for?"

"The lab needs three new Electron Microscopes. I'm here to ask for them. Wish me luck." She said as she opened the door.

April wouldn't need luck. Anytime the teachers needed anything, they sent her to ask. April was a knockout with long red hair and deep green eyes. She had a silky voice and a modest bust. The most beautiful thing about her though was the fact that she didn't know how beautiful she really was. Nick liked her but for other reasons. She had a brilliant mind. Nevertheless, they were coworkers and he was too shy to say anything anyway. [I] I need to get home. I need a shower... a cold one. [/I]

He pulled into the driveway stopping first at the mailbox to get collect any bills that might have come. He set the mail in his lap then pulled his 66 Mustang up the open garage. The engine sat at idle while he thumbed through the stack. The electric bill was due and there were a few catalogues he'd ordered but not much else. He cut the ignition and headed for the door.

As he walked across the threshold, he tripped and nearly fell on his pet ferret named Max. The mail hit floor and scattered. "Hey, watch it there buddy. It's dangerous to be under someone's feet like that. I'll feed you in a minute." He knelt down and started picking up the scattered mail. Max jumped on his shoulders and chirped in his ear. "Are you dictating?" As he was picking up one of the catalogues, a white envelope slipped out. "What have we here?" Max chirped a few more times. "Alright, alright let's get you some food." He set the mail down on the table as he walked into the kitchen. He kept the white envelope and started opening it on the way to the cupboard. He pulled down a can of gourmet cat food, set it on the counter then pulled the letter from the torn end of the envelope. "What the hell?"

He ran from the kitchen leaving max on the counter staring intently had the unopened can. "I know I've got something on this somewhere." He reached his study and went immediately to his desk where upon where stacked several leather bound books. He browsed through several of the books before he found the one he was looking for. "Yes this is it. The Legend of Merkan Manor." He read the journal quickly. There wasn't much on it. Most of the writings were the various Urban Legends that had spawned over the years. Many of the pages were blank but that would soon change. There was a crash in the kitchen. He jumped forgetting himself for brief moment. He walked to the kitchen to see Max dragging the can of cat food across the floor. "I'm sorry Max. I'll take care of that for you."

Max ate happily on the countertop as he looked over the invitation. "Tonight? It's a bit sudden but I think I can manage. I'll need to change though.."

He didn't have much when it came to fancy dress and he lacked any sort of dress shoe but the invite didn't specify attire. If they didn't like what he was wearing they would just have to deal with it. But who were they? Why was he invited? Perhaps it was a prank, set by his students. There was only one way to find out. He would go to Merkan Manor and see for himself.

The mansion he had drawn in his notebook was nothing compared to the real thing. Only now, standing in front of it did he fully realize it's terrible majesty. It was raining. Was it raining on the way up here? Oddly enough he couldn't remember. The imposing structure to beckon him forward. Without realizing it, he was at the door. Electric impulses fired in his brain sending off warnings signals. They traveled through his body sending a shiver up his spine. They rested in his now trembling hand. What the hell was going on? "Now Nikolas, stop this foolishness." He said to himself. He clenched his fist then slowly opened them. The trembling stopped but the sense of foreboding lingered around him. He was about to knock on the door when it suddenly opened.

There others just inside. He didn't recognize anyone. They all seemed to headed into a large room. "When in Rome." He said as moved with them. It was odd there was no one to greet them and the mansion was dark. Every horror movie he'd ever seen came to mind as he looked around. The storm outside was a perfect touch. He walked into the large room and saw a man standing in a massive library with drink in his hand. The man with the drink faded into obscurity when he beheld this vast treasure trove of knowledge. Oblivious to anyone else there, he walked over to one of the bookcases and began to examine the titles.

[Edited by Dalmar on Saturday, July 14, 2007 12:22 PM]

07/15/2007 3:28 AM

She cocked an eyebrow.
"You must be joking."

The amazon in the red silk had clearly been expecting the gathering to be a little bit more... exclusive. A roll of her eyes had been Nina's only reply, as she instead watched an asian kid get out of a newly arrived car and trot over to them enthusiastically.

[i]Well, we certainly are making an eclectic bunch[/i].

The guy she had first seen at the door, the red head, had just introduced himself when the door opened, before any of the rest of them had a chance to reply. Shoving her hands into into the back pockets of her jeans she stepped through to a darkened foyer, the fact that the door had seemingly opened by itself only of marginal interest to her: whoever had brought them here clearly had a strange sense of humour. This impression was only further enhanced by the appearance of a cadaverous butler, straight out of a Hammer horror.

With a terse and tantalising mention of his mysterious master Lurch deposited them in a library, beautifully appointed and heavy with the scent of old paper and leather. Running a finger along a row of spines, their titles as eclectic as the group gathered in the room, she made her way to the table bearing the brandy and poured herself a small measure. She offered her free hand to John, who still stood there.

"Sini Lehtonen- Nina. Any idea why we're here?"

She took a sip of the brandy, the light in the room playing through its dark amber like flames, watching as a tall man in a tan suit came through the door. From the look he gave the room, and the delighted hunger with which he dove at the rows of books, he didn't seem to be their host.

[i]Another for the menagerie[/i].

07/15/2007 7:26 AM

Evaganline recived no reply from the bright-haired girl, but she had hardly expected one. She was about to turn her tounge on the man who'd just introduced himself, John, when the door swung open to all of them; including the young asian boy who'd just dashed into the porch.
[i] Wonderful, more ragamuffins, [/i] Evangaline thought to herself as she stepped into the hallway, the marble entryway tile echoing under their feet--even their shoes sounded decidedly eeire in the cold interior.

They were ushered into the library by a mummified butler who more than likely had been with the house just as long as the oak paneling--finally, something more british upper-class than mountain-man american; ancient as he was, the butler made Evangaline feel she was on more familiar ground.

The library was exquisite. The leather and dark wood whispered of years and years of knowledge and hummed with an odd energy. The two she'd first met at the door had gone straight for the liquer--typical american. She too sauntered of to the small tabe, but picked up the brandy bottle and examined the bottle-a 1938, impressive and more than likely worth more than her shoes, which was saying a lot.

"My name is Evangaline Augusta," she said softly, producing cards for both of them. "Antique dealer, mostly jewelry." She noticed a flash of jade at the wrist of the young woman who had introduced herself as Nina, but decided to persue that interest later. She was about to pour her own glass of brandy when she noticed a tan flash along one of the miriad of bookshelves. [i] Another [/i] man had traipsed in, who now turned his back to the company and examined the books in a most scholarly way. Fabulous, this one was anti-social.

"And the party keeps getting more interesting," she sighed, flicking a meticulously manicured hand at the tan suit.

07/15/2007 4:14 PM

"Hello Nina, nice to meet you." John looked at the girl. Her outfit was extravagant, helped out greatly by the multitude of facial piercing. Hardly the attire for a dinner party.

"Nina, can you answer a serious question for me? Does it seem a little weird that we are all invited to a party? None of us knew each other until now so it just seems a little weird&."

John noted the other person that entered late, his old military training comming into play. He remembered countless training exersizes.

[i] Always note your surroundings [/i]

John walked over to a bookcase and began looking at the books.

07/15/2007 9:55 PM

"What an amazing collection, and this, this is unbelievable. To possess Homer in original Greek; the master of this manor certainly has very fine tastes." He said to himself as he looked over the titles. He glanced to see a woman with outstretched hand. It didn't register right away that she was making an attempt at greeting him. He noted the drink and politely refused.
"No thank you. I don't drink." The look on her face said it all. [I] Way to greet someone Nick. Real smooth. [/I] He turned to face her now. "I'm terribly sorry Madame. I'm not used to this sort of thing. I'm Nikolas Arden pleased to meet you." He took her hand in proper greeting.
"Pride in appearance, it's a good quality."
Did he just say that out loud ? "Err, that is to say, you look nice. Um...do you read much?" He crossed his arms in an attempt to look casual. It failed miserably. God he was bad at this. He wanted to beat his head against the wall. [I] Calm down Nikolas. Its just a social event with total strangers nothing to be worried about. This is just like your first day teaching. Just relax and it will work out. [/I]
"This is a magnificent collection." He said as he gazed back the myriad of books.

[Edited by Dalmar on Sunday, July 15, 2007 9:58 PM]

07/16/2007 9:24 AM

Jamie's question was answered seconds later by a strange looking butler. As he followed the butler and the rest of the group towards another room, he look rather disgusted by the extravagant manor.

'How the hell i end up here? Oh well, if i could help my dad why not? He work his ass of for the family and for my college in this foreign country but its too luxurious for me, aghh!!'

Jamie then entered the library with the others. As the butler leaves, Jamie looked around and notice the other 2 guys and 2 women in the room. Jamie decides to introduce himself to the group.

"I am Jamie Tan and it is nice to meet you all."

Well everyone seem to be engross with their own things to really pay attention. So, Jamie decided to get a drink for himself. As he walks over to the table and suddenly he was shocked to see only western liqour and brandy or whatever they called it here.

'Ahh... Why bother inviting me? I am the odd one here, youngest and the only asian. At least give me a hot cup of tea if you are going to invite an asian and i am not at a legal drinking age as well.'

As Jamie approach the table, he decides to try the brandy as its not the first time he drank liqour as he always steals his dad's chinese wine when he is down and sad. He pours some of it in a glass. As he sips the brandy, he notice a girl giving out her name cards. He overheard her introduction - an antique dealer. His dad was an old fashioned guy and loves antiques. He could not bring his stuff to this country when he migrated with my mother here. Well, his parents anniversary is coming up and getting them an antique furniture or some sort would be the best gift he ever given to them.

"Excuse me, Ms. Evangaline, if i pronounced it correctly, i am Jamie Tan if you didnt hear my intros earlier. Very nice to meet you." Jamie said to her as he extended his hand with his right hand to her.

[Edited by SapphireFrost on Monday, July 16, 2007 9:29 AM]

[Edited by SapphireFrost on Monday, July 16, 2007 10:44 AM]

07/18/2007 5:36 AM

"My name is Evangaline Augusta," she said softly, producing cards for both of them. "Antique dealer, mostly jewelry."

[i]Oh surprise. New money or bourgeois, I wonder...[/i]

She slipped the card- a beautiful, elegant thing- into a back pocket absently, a little surprised the woman had even deigned to give her one considering the somewhat imperious look she had received at the door. Habit, she supposed.

"Nina, can you answer a serious question for me? Does it seem a little weird that we are all invited to a party? None of us knew each other until now so it just seems a little weird&."

She followed him as he went towards the bookcase, thinking it a little rude that he had started walking away before even waiting for an answer but willing, considering the circumstances, to overlook it- and feeling that he might be slightly easier to engage in conversation than the lovely Evangeline.

"Hell yeah it's weird. Very House-on-Haunted-Hill".

She gave a brief, dry laugh, taking another small mouthful of the amber liquid, holding it in her mouth briefly before swallowing it.

"Even the weather is right. If the power goes I think we might just be in trouble".

Her tone was jocular enough, but there was definitely something unsettling about the scenario.

07/18/2007 7:19 AM

"Tonight? A dinner party? How lovely! The perfect opportunity for us to start reintroducing you. Does it say who is hosting? It must be someone important, with that sort of stationery. How rude to wait..."
Yelena registered her mother's idle drone, but paid it no mind. A dinner party. Why?

"...dress will do, but I have absolutely nothing that fits anymore. It's been so long since we were invited to any type of formal affair." Her eyes shot daggers at the unconcerned Yelena.
"Mother," the young woman replied softly, setting the invitation down on the coffee table, "we are not a collective unit. The invitation says my name, not yours. I'm going alone."

Yelena's mother blinked once, caught off guard.

"You are being foolish," she breathed. "You can't expect to gain anything without me. Why, you barely even speak! How can you make connections on your own?"
Yelena glared at her from her folded position on the pristine white leather sofa. "My connections will be left unconnected. I'm finished, you know that."

An uncomfortable silence descended on the dimly lit parlor. Yelena looked down at her lap, the rare look of confidence morphing into worry. Finally she muttered, "Fine. Come." No sooner had she spoken than her mother sniffed, dabbing at her eye daintily.
"Oh, I am a horrible mother! I know I am, I won't go with you, you really don't want me to! Go without me, please, just leave me here and I will better, I promise!" With that she stood, choked out one more sob, and fled the room.
Yelena sighed heavily. She gave the invitation a wary gaze, then stood as well and ascended the carpeted stair to her room.


Ten minutes later Yelena found her mother in the spotless, marble-and-stainless-steel kitchen, watching an old Russian film and picking at a leftover salad. As her daughter entered she looked up, raising one perfect eyebrow, her earlier outburst clearly forgotten. "You're wearing that?" She asked, indicating the aqua water-patterned overrobe which hung loosely over Yelena's black concert dress.
"No," said Yelena simply, taking it off and holding it under her arm. "Can I borrow your car?"
"Certainly not. Take your father's."
Yelena took the proffered keys and left.


She hated driving even in the best of conditions, and was amazed when she finally saw her destination right where it should have been. The suddenness of the mansion's appearance was almost as unnerving as its gothic facade. As the dark green Audi's tires crunched over gravel and Yelena watched the house draw closer in between passes of the windshield wipers, the car stooped with the sickening sound of crushed metal.

Jolted out of her observations, Yelena gasped. She had not noticed the line of cars parked in the courtyard. Quickly she backed up a few inches, killed the ignition, and stepped out. The damage wasn't too bad, but not unoticeable. Slightly shaken, Yelena hurried to the front door, conscious of the rain penetrating her dress. But now, faced with the heavy wooden entrance, she couldn't bring herself to knock. Several times she steeled herself and each time she backed down.

When she finally raised her hand in preparation, the door swung open. Disconcerted, Yelena peered inside, seeing no one. For a moment she wondered if the wind had blown the door open, and she should shut it and wait, but better judgement prevailed and she stepped inside.
The foyer smelled musty and damp. Shivering instintively- it was like walking into a tomb!- she followed the voices coming from her right and found a library, stocked with a plethora of old-fashioned leatherbound tomes and an assortment of people in various stages of dress.

Suddenly she felt uncomfortable in the formal attire. The airy gown weighed heavily on her shoulders and the heeled shoes pinched her feet. She took a deep breath and plunged forward into what was, she assumed, the dinner party. Slipping through the entrance, she stayed near the door to watch the people gathered there, careful not to meet anyone's eyes.

[Edited by infamously_delirious on Wednesday, July 18, 2007 12:53 PM]

07/19/2007 6:13 PM

The Library was dimly lit by candlelight, some electric lights hung on the ceiling, the walls were lined with books, the guests had started uneasy conversation. Suddenly, the power went out and the electric lights went out, the candles provided the only light.

John looked up in alarmed at the scenario. Outside, the rain was comming down fast and hard, breif strikes of lightning illuminated the room.

[i] Its only the storm [/i]

Then the power returned, the lights came back on, the room was back to normal. John's eyes stung from the sudden change in lighting.

"Welcome everyone" A loud voice sounded from above. John looked to where it came and saw a middle aged man with black hair wearing a tuxedo standing on the second story of the library. He began to walk down the spiral staircase to the first floor.

The whole room was staring at the sudden appearance. When he reached the bottom he scanned the room over and said "Welcome everyone, I am so delighted that you could come, I am Charles Merkan I own this mansion"

There was a brief silence that went on for a few minutes. Looking around, John decided to be the first to talk. "Hello Charles, Im John Orbon"

John extended his hand to the man and he took it, they both shook hands. "Hello John" He looked up at everyone with his cool sky blue eyes. He spoke in an English-American accent "Does anyone want the tour?"

07/22/2007 9:05 AM

Nina hadn't had time to spare the new girl more than a glance- she looked tense, and vaguely familiar- before their host made his somewhat dramatic appearance- temporary power loss and everything.

The feeling that this was all just some elaborate joke was not assuaged by Merkan's entrance: if anything it made a well of laughter struggle to escape her lips.

[i]At least my worry that the evening was going to be boring seems to be unfounded[/i]...

Everyone seemed nearly stunned into silence, looking from each other up to their host and back. Surprisingly, at least as far as she was concerned, Evangeline was not the first to speak, John instead stepping forward with a greeting almost jarring in its normalcy.

He spoke in an English-American accent "Does anyone want the tour?"

"Why not?" she spoke up with a slight smile, "might help break the ice".

It seemed a little rude and impatient to just say 'Hell no- tell us why we're all here, you oddball'. Besides, the night was still young, and there was plenty of time for answers.

[OOC: sorry for shortness, but obviously a few replies are needed from people before we can continue}

07/24/2007 9:49 PM

As impressive as the library was he knew he could not just stay in it the whole time. He was a guest at this mansion and he really should act like it. He needed to work on his social skills anyway. His first attempt at mingling was horrible. Perhaps he could try conversing with the man that had just walked over. What would he say though? Greetings were easy it was the rest of the conversation that eluded him. He could sit down and have a nice discussion about the Byzantine Empire, but get him a room full of guests to have a casual conversation and he was at a complete loss. His life, though adequate for him, was often viewed as boring by others.

[I] Come on Nick, just get in there and mingle. [/I] He turned toward the man who had approached the bookcase. "Greetings, I'm Nikolas Arden." At least that's what he wanted to say and he might have had the power not gone out. He might have thought it was the weather like everyone else, but the Master's appearance at the precise moment power came back on was no coincidence. It seemed Mr. Merkan had a flair for the dramatic. Wait, didn't the Merkan family disappear without a trace? Now this was interesting, perhaps coming her to this place would prove to be more valuable than he'd thought. When asked if anyone would like to take the tour he couldn't possibly refuse. "I'd be delighted."

07/25/2007 10:51 PM

Fortunately the apparent owner of the house showed up not too soon after Yelena. The power outage was dramatic, yes, and probably not a coincidence, but at least it diverted everyone's attention. She was glad to see the man wore a tuxedo- she had been unable to decide whether it was, in fact, a jeans-and-tshirts affair. She watched as a handful of guests assented to take a tour of the mansion, and quickly stepped forward to make sure she wasn't the last to do so. Quietly, "I will go too."

07/29/2007 7:47 PM

((( I LIVE! )))

Evangaline was about to open her mouth to elegantly berate the young male hand extended to her when the lights flickered, the perfect mix of timing and terror. For a moment, even Evangaline's stoic heart clenched.

Then the man appeared on the stairs, swept right out the shadows and bookshelves. How dramatic.

When he reached the bottom he scanned the room over and said "Welcome everyone, I am so delighted that you could come, I am Charles Merkan I own this mansion"

Well that was no surprise, but she had been hoping for poltergiests to come sweeping from the cieling bemoaning their untimely deaths. BUt you can't have everything. Haveing nearly forgotten the boy at her side until her hip brushed his own, she absentmindedly extened a card to him, slinging the word "charmed" somewhere in his general direction. The one called John had began his introductions, then suddenly Merkin was talking to all again.

"Does anyone want the tour?"

A few of them had piped up, and Evangaline, feeling no need to speak to make her presence known, simply waved her hand in consensus. She might was well come along on this macbre little ride.

08/02/2007 6:19 PM

Charles Merkan looked at his guests enthusiastically and said "Then we are off". He turned on his heel and began walking toward the door that they had all entered.

"As you all must now have realized, this is the Library, it has taken myself and my family many years to collect all of these books"

As the group approached the door, it opened slowly and the butler appeared. He walked in and straight toward the glasses that the group deposited on a table when their drinks were done.

Merkan spoke again, this time gesturing to the butler "This is Harold, he is a long time family friend"

As they left the room, John couldn't shake the feeling that Harold was watching them. Shivering to himself, he followed Merkan out into the grand hallway. The Grand hallway had a large staircase going up and led into the upstairs and the towers. The hallway was a furnished with oak panel siding, marbel pilliars, and a luxurious red carpet.

Merkan led the party all throughout the house, the downstairs at least, he said when John asked about the upstairs "No one, goes upstairs".

They went through the parlor, bathroom, dining room, kitchen, and a variety of rooms. When they finished the tour, Merkan and the party stood in the grand entranceway.

Merkan said loudly and with affection "Well, now it appears to be dinner time, shall we go to the Dinning room?" After that, he led the way into the room. He sat at the head of the table and said "Dinner will be ready shortly, you'll find that your seats have been marked with where you are meant to sit"

08/02/2007 7:31 PM

Following the enigmatic yet friendly dinner host throughout the vast first floor of the manor, Yelena couldn't help but be impressed by the lavish decor. It was truly an image of not just extravagant wealth, but very fine taste.
However, once past the twentieth or so engraved marble column, the rooms began to all look the same, and Yelena turned her attention to the woman next to her- well, next to and slightly in front of. Thinking this was as good a time as any to talk since she would never see these people again, she quickly reconsidered as the lady in red turned her head to look at a magnificent landscape painting. If anything, the set of the woman's perfect features made her want to run away. As the party drew to a halt in the grand hallway, Yelena barely avoided stepping on her heel by accident.

In front of them, Merkan said something about dinner, and the group meandered into the dining room a lot like cattle.

"Dinner will be ready shortly, you'll find that your seats have been marked with where you are meant to sit"

Yelena scanned the cards. After a brief search she spotted her name at the middle of the right side. No one had taken their seats as of yet, so she remained standing.

08/03/2007 5:36 PM

Shawn peered through the swishing windshield wipers of his car as he drove up the mountain road, driving as fast up the dark and seemingly desserted road as he dared. Risking a quick glance to the aviator's watch he'd gotten as part of his inheritance, he hit the brakes when he looked back out the car, a dark mansion suddenly visible through the trees. Reaching over to the passenger seat, he picked up the strange invitation he had received a week or so earlier, looking from the address listed to the mansion and then as far up the road as he could.

[i]Must be the place, nothing else is around. Wonder who this Merkan guy is that invited me? Judging by the place, must be a relative of the Munsters.[/i]

As he followed the gravel drive into the courtyard, he received confirmation that this was the correct place. That, or the owner of this house had very strange tastes for automobile collecting, he decided.

Parking next to a dark green Audi, he felt relieved to see that his somewhat newer Monte Carlo wouldn't be too out of place, with the exception of the Jaguar. Locking his car, he jogged to the front porch, shaking the water from his clothes before raising his hand to knock. Shawn barely kept from jumping as the door swung inside before he touched it, the opening filled by a very tall butler who, in his opinion, looked more dead than alive. [i]So Munsters' relative it is...or possibly the Addams' family. Not sure I really wanna know though.[/i]

"Um, yeah...I got this invite in the mail..." Shawn started, stopping as the butler opened the door the rest of the way and motioned for him to follow. "Um..sure. Thanks."

Walking through the house behind the butler, Shawn couldn't help but look around in amazement at the architecture and decoration of the mansion, their footsteps barely audible in the thick red carpet lining the hall. The butler ushered him to a room where a small group of people were milling around the doorway, a large wooden dining table set in the middle of the room, it's sole occupant a middle-aged man in a tuxedo sitting at the head of the table.

Standing next to the group, his arrival apparently unnoticed by the others, he looked around at them, noting the strange collection gathered. He saw two older men in suits. There were three women who appeared to be close to his age, one in a t-shirt and jeans, the other two in dresses, even if the shorter of them was wearing a kimono over her black dress. The only other visible guest was a young asian male who looked like he was barely out of high school, wearing jeans and a t-shirt as well. None of them looked familiar at all to him.

[i]O-kay...this would probably explain the wide variety of cars out front. Who are these people, and why are we all here? Someone decide to throw a party and send out invites to random people?[/i]

Glancing at his watch again as his stomach growled, Shawn let out a small, barely audible sigh, then commented with slight sarcasm, "Too late to be on time, too early to be fashionably late. Are we waiting to be seated?"

08/04/2007 8:50 AM

The mansion was exquisite, even Evangaline couldn't argue that fact. A tastlful ensemble of the finest art, sculpture, furnishings--a little out of date perhaps, but elegance has no timeline.

About halfway through the tour of the downstairs, Evangaline realized the girl in the kimono robe behind her was closing in on her personal space. She could [i]feel[/i] the uncertainty and nerves radiating from the young woman, she became enraptured with a hanging tapestry however, before she could turn to fully inspect the girl.

The dining room was just as rich and perfect as the rest of the house, down to the silverware--this family obviously left nothing to chance. Having been told to find their place-cards, Evangaline spotted hers quickly, her name was hard to miss amonst many of the shorter ones. The one next to her though, Yelena from her card, was the same young woman who'd nearly bashed into her earlier. Neither of them sat down, and Evangaline's eyes immeadiatly began searching for jewelry, out of habit.

"Do you bite your nails?" Evangaline asked cooly, her eyes moving in a slow arc from Yelena's hands to her eyes. Before she could recieve a reply however, another young man came stumbling onto the dining room. Another [i]wet[/i] young man.

Glancing at his watch again as his stomach growled, Shawn let out a small, barely audible sigh, then commented with slight sarcasm, "Too late to be on time, too early to be fashionably late. Are we waiting to be seated?"

"Well, this one's observant," Evangaline muttered out the side of her red mouth.

08/08/2007 2:57 PM

[i][b]Sini Lehtonen[/b][/i]

The writing was in the same elegant, curlicuing script as the invitation, the card made of a thick, fine paper.

Nina glanced at the newcomer, dressed like a walking bruise [OOC:heh], nodding in his direction while simultaneously managing to roll her eyes at Evangeline's comment toward the quiet girl in the black dress.

[i]Wonder if she's the type to lighten up with some wine?..[/i]

She shook her head and smiled, highly doubtful, as she pulled her chair out, sighing at the large array of silverware arrayed by her plate.

[i]Seriously- who needs so many forks? Ridiculous[/i]

She followed Merkan's example and sat in the high backed chair, its silk upholstery soft and cool, even felt through her clothes.

08/08/2007 8:58 PM

Shawn managed to keep a straight face, in spite of Evangaline's barely perceptible comment.

[i]Well...dollars to pesos says that we know who owns the Jag now, don't we?[/i]

Jase returned Nina's nod, a smile forming at the contrasts between the two females.

[i]That's funny. First thing that Ms. High and Mighty socialite does is insult me, while the one person that would probably be suspected by most of being anti-social is the first to politely recognize my existence. Interesting piercings. Almost makes me curious about what static electricity would do though...[/i]

Following the example set by this second female, he searched the table, pleased to note that he was sitting next her. Removing his leather jacket as he walked around the table, hanging his jacket and ballcap on the back of the ornate wooden chair before he sat down, sinking into the upholstery. He scanned the setting before him, eyebrow arching as he observed the silver utensils.

[i]Grandpa woulda loved this place. He was always telling me that I needed to develop my tastes more, rather than "slumming," as he put it.[/i]

Turning to the girl now seated on his right, he held out a hand.

"Shawn Roberts."

08/08/2007 11:16 PM

The tour was everything he expected it to be. The mansion was truly magnificent, but he was a little disappointed that they were denied access to the upper floors. He didn't know why he was disappointed it was just a dinner party. They all made their way to the large dinning room were they had been assigned seats at the table. He found his place card at the end of the left side closest to the entrance. How fortunate he was to be seated at his preferred seat. He would only have one person next to him and he was close to the door, though he told himself over and over again that he would not let his nerves get to him; it was always good to be prepared to leave without causing too much commotion.

He stared at the formal place setting before at a complete loss. Being a loner didn't help with his lack of proper etiquette. He remembered seeing a film on it once but he never took it to heart. He never imagined he would ever be put in such a position. He thought about it for a moment but decided not to worry. If no one said anything about his shoes then he doubted they mind what fork he ate with. One thing he did know though was that the time before the meal was served was reserved for idle chit chat or to speak with the head of the manor and there was a question that was just dying to get out. No doubt it on the other guests' minds as well. He looked to the head of the table and politely spoke. "First I would like to thank you for this most generous invitation, but forgive me if I sound presumptuous, but I believe I speak for all of us when I ask; why are we here?"

08/10/2007 2:44 PM

"Nina Lehtonen, pleasure".

After shaking the offered hand she flicked the fold out of the linen napkin on her place setting and lay it on her knee.

"Guess there's not much point in asking what brings you to our eclectic- and oh-so-friendly- group, eh?"
She couldn't resist raising an eyebrow in Evangeline's direction.

About to continue the first real chance for conversation there had been since she'd arrived she was cut off by the auburn-haired man in the tan suit who'd been so enamored by the library.

Closing her mouth with an irritated sigh- at this point she was as interested in finding out about the individual guests as their reason for being drawn here- she nonetheless turned slightly in her chair to better observe their host.

08/10/2007 3:25 PM

Shawn smiled at Nina's handshake. He'd been told you could tell a lot from a person by their grip, and he'd come to believe it. Her grip hadn't been limp and submissive, nor was it tight and commanding; it'd been equally balance. And it sure hadn't been the prim, aristocratic "you may kiss the royal ring" grip he was almost sure the lady in red silk would have offered, if he'd been given that.

Chuckling gently at the subtle jab towards the other female, he grabbed his own napkin and was about to reply when the tan-suited man spoke. Hearing the question that he'd been wondering about spoken, he turned towards the head of the table and the man who'd been sitting there quietly.

[OOC: Sorry so short, but he IS curious as to why the hell he's there, and didn't want to leave Nina with another unanswered question.]

08/10/2007 6:13 PM

"Well it all occurs to me that you all are wondering as to 'why' you are here" Charles said with a twinkle in his eye.

"You are all here on your own free will, you came here out of your own curiosity, a curiosity that had to be satisfied by comming here to get answers. As for me, I wanted to have a party and I invited you all here to have one."

Merkan wore a smile upon his face, his blue eyes twinkling, his black hair lay in clean and full layers.

"Well, shall we eat?" Merkan said as he took his napkin and layed it across his lap. He clapped his hands together in the manner that one would summon a servant. In a matter of seconds, Harold, the butler, and another young woman in a maids uniform exited the door from the kitchen.

They were driving little trollys of silver and gold filled with dishes and food. Both of them stopped by each seat of the polished oak table with the silk tablecloth and presented the patron there with a dish.

The first course was an exquisite soup that tasted wonderfull, all of the right ingredients were put into it so that it tasted wonderful.

John reluctantly picked up the silverware, the situation was simply to bizarre to comprehend. He cautiously dipped his spoon into the creamy white liquid, taking a small sample, almost expecting poison.

The reaction was quite the oposite, it tasted wonderful and had no trace of any defilement. John dove back into his dish, eating in consideration only because of the fact he was in the presense of others and manners were required. Taking a sip of the red wine that was in his glass, he looked around at everyone.

(OOC: Im not that good with exotic and wonderful foods so people can make it up. Im leaving it undescript because im incompitant lol. You can fill in the blanks if your smart ;))

08/10/2007 7:09 PM

(((Food is one of my speciallities :p )))

Evangaline rolled her eyes at Merkan's reply to the question. How fabulously vauge. The food, however, was exceptional; a light lobster bisque was set first, just the right consistancy--fresh and full. There was an excellent chef lurking somewhere in this ancient house.

Evangaline laughed inwardly to see some of the guests fumbling with their silver-ware. Apparently Merkan Manor didn't come equipped with plastic sporks. The man called John, the first guest aside from the pale-headed girl Evangaline had seen was seated across from her. He was also using a dessert spoon.

She lightly put her hand across the table and tapped her long fingers on his wrist to get his attention.

"Darling," she said low enough where only he could here, covering a smirk in a seductive smile. "You're using the wrong spoon."

08/11/2007 10:00 AM

"Guess there's not much point in asking what brings you to our eclectic- and oh-so-friendly- group, eh?"

"You are all here on your own free will, you came here out of your own curiosity

Shawn looked at their host, eyebrow rising in disbelief as the food was starting to be served. Giving a small shrug, he towards Nina, hoping to see some sign he wasn't the only one completely unconvinced by this reasoning, or lack thereof. He'd managed to barely catch the lady in read (her place card said [i]Evangaline Augusta[/i]) roll her eyes.

"Well, guess that answers the question, doesn't it? We're here because of our own curiousity."

Looking down at the silverware arranged at his setting, his mind wondered at the options available. As the succulent aroma of the first dish reached him, those options turned from reasons they might be here to which spoon to use.

[i]We're here because of curiousity. And curiousity killed the cat. And which way is silverware used again? Start at the outside, or start at the inside? Aw, hell with it...[/i]

With a quick glance around to see what the other guests were using, he just grabbed a spoon at random, dipping it into the soup and tasting it. It tasted better than he'd thought it would, though from the looks of the rest of the mansion, he wasn't expecting it to taste like Campbell's soup in a can.

Looking back to Nina, he took another spoonful before asking, "So aside from being insanely curious, what brings you here?"

08/11/2007 8:10 PM

"Do you bite your nails?"

Looking down at the place setting in front of her, Yelena blushed fiercely at the lady in red- Evangeline's- comment. Rather than respond, she picked up the round soup spoon and poked at the creamy, pinkish liquid in front of her. After a few seconds' delay, she tasted it. It was nice, she admitted to herself. Very nice. Lobster bisque was her guess, although the fishy flavor was not overbearingly obvious. She sighed to herself.

What was the point of being here? She had thought she could make some effort, have some conversation, but here she was surrounded by people and all she could do was look at her soup. She wasn't really hungry, anyway.

Taking the opportunity to look around while everyone was concentrating on the food and how to eat it, she watched the most recent arrival talking to the metal girl. She honestly couldn't imagine how either of them could look so at ease when they were not at all dressed for a fancy dinner. But she envied them, all the same.

[i]Come on, [/i] the voice inside her head chided here. [i] Stop acting like a statue. You will never see these people again, so even if you're shot down it's only a few more hours of discomfort. [/i]

Yelena agreed. She squeezed her eyes tightly shut for a moment, breathed in deeply, then untensed, turned to Evangeline, and said, "This soup is amazing, no?"

08/12/2007 3:56 AM

Looking back to Nina, he took another spoonful before asking, "So aside from being insanely curious, what brings you here?"

Nina pushed her bisque, untouched, away from her, taking a small roll from the bread basket instead.

"Boredom? A little procrastination, too, I suppose- looking for an excuse to escape post grad work for a while". She sliced the roll carefully, leaving it unbuttered. "
Good thing too- what with my curiosity being [i]completely[/i] dispelled by that answer there'd be no other reason for me to stay, otherwise".

She watched Merkan as she spoke, his unsatisfactory answer as to why they were all here making this feel yet more like Theatre of the Absurd- and his mention of free will making her half expect him to whip out Ouija boards and start drawing summoning glyphs.

[i]It's all just a game to him[/i]

"Get the feeling we're the entertainment for the night?" she flicked her eyes in the direction of their host, smiling faintly.

"How about you? What, besides out incurable curiosity, brings you out on such a miserably wet night?"

08/12/2007 8:20 AM

Evangaline cocked an eyebrow at the young woman's voice.

"This soup is amazing, no?"

[i] So she speaks [/i]

"Yes, it is isn't it?" Evangaline replyed, setting her spoon down lightly without so much as a chattering of china. "I don't believe we've been introduced. My name is Evangaline Augusta, I deal in antiques out of my main shop in London." She brushed her own meticulous hair off her shoulder and repressed an urge to flick the younger lady's hair off her forehead. "What brings you here on such a melodramatic night?"

08/12/2007 5:34 PM

Shawn forced himself to not glance back at their host, hoping that the feeling of insanity he felt for being here was a by-product of the bisque. That was pretty easy to do, once the third female, wearing a black dress, spoke to Evangaline. His feeling of respect for her bravery spiked up.

[i]Yelena However-you-say-that-Davis. Either really brave, or really desperate for conversation to cover up any uneasiness she might be feeling. That, or really tolerant. Either way, she can keep Socialite Augusta's attention off me.[/i]

"Get the feeling we're the entertainment for the night?"

"How about you? What, besides out incurable curiosity, brings you out on such a miserably wet night?"

He reflexively turned to look at Mr. Merkan, then back to Nina before shrugging again.

"Hope we're not the entertainment. My singing sucks, I don't play instruments, and I haven't been allowed to practice juggling since I broke my Grandpa's prized vase when I was twelve."

He paused before answering her other question, answering it with a slight shrug, feigning indifference.

"You might say I was convinced to get back into a more social life. Personally, I think Cliff was just trying to do Grandpa one last favor by ordering me to do more than sit around instead of going out like I used to."

He motioned to her ignored dish.

"You know, one thing I did learn from sitting around is that boredom lacks any flavor and tend to be mundane. The food's pretty good, try some. Almost everyone else has eaten, and I'm sure we would've already noticed if it was poi-..."

The last word was cut off as Shawn went speechless, mouth and eyes open in a look of horror, his hand moving towards his throat as he started to fall forward to the table. As his head started to roll down he snapped it back up, his grin turning to a small grimace as the back of his head hit the thick wooden back of the chair.

"Poisoned," he finished, his hand rubbing his scalp, feeling a small bump rising. He gave a small sheepish grin at his emberassment, forcing a laugh out. He was grateful that the next dish was coming from the kitchen to be served.

"The food won't kill ya, but the furniture sure will try."

[i]Damn that hurt.[/i]

[Edit: Y'all know I had to start playing the clown sooner or later.]

[Edited by StoicFervor on Sunday, August 12, 2007 7:06 PM]

08/13/2007 1:55 AM

"What brings you here on such a melodramatic night?"

Yelena breathed a mental sigh of relief. Evangaline's reaction was milder than even her most optomistic hopes had predicted. Momentarily caught off guard by the necessity of answering a civil question- a situation she had not expected, she hastily came up with something. Anything.

"I don't know," was her intelligent response. Great. "My- ah, I was told to attend. My mo- er, I think that I don't go out enough. But I really don't know. I am no good at this type of affair, never was..."

She trailed off. Did all that really come out of her mouth? What was she talking about, anyway? Did she really think this beautiful, sophisticated lady cared about her lack of social motivations? Quickly she added, "Antiques? That sounds fascinating. What sort, exactly?"

08/13/2007 2:54 AM

[i]Oh thank God- somebody with a bit of life in them[/i]

Her laughter came out as something of a snort through the water she'd been drinking. Lifting her napkin to her mouth she tried to control the shaking in her shoulders. The stunt probably wasn't as funny as it felt, but it went a hell of a way to breaking the ice- and the undercurrent of nervous tension that seemed to be building.

"If we [i]are[/i] to be murdered you know you've just marked yourself- voicing suspicions within hearing of our host? Dangerous move- you'll probably be the first to go".

Replacing her napkin on her knee she waved a hand at her bisque.

"And that, well... even if I was inclined to eat something that's been boiled alive growing up in Maine kind of turns you off 'lobstah', ayuh. But maybe that's just me".

She handed the plate up to the maid as the table was being cleared for the next course, and then gestured to the back of his head, not quite managing to sound sympathetic through the smile.

"Do you want some ice for that?"

08/13/2007 8:25 AM

Merkin slowly downed his soup, it was exactly as he asked for. Sarah had done well, she had made everything well. It seems as though everyone was finishing up their soup and pushing aside the china.

Harold and Sarah slowly went around the table, taking everyone's soup dish and replacing it with a plate. The next course was the main course, John didn't know what it was.

It was a juicy and tender meat that was seasoned perfectly. A side of vegetables adorned the left side of his plate. The meat was tender and seasoned with exotic and rare spices. John picked up a fork, the right fork, and stabbed it into the meat, it was as great as the soup.

Merkin watched as the guests got their plates and began eating his own. The guests were settling in, making small talk, and were overall, appeared to be having a good time.

John, who was sitting next to Merkin at the head, turned over to him and complimented him.

"This meal is amazing, I have never tasted greater!"

Merkin turned and said happily "Im glad you enjoyed it, It is Sarah who is our cook, she is very good"

Both turned around and began eating their meals, John wondered what would be next on the menu.

(OOC: Zombie, Fill in the blanks again please, everyone else, OBEY HER!)

08/13/2007 9:32 AM

Evangaline looked down her nose at the smaller woman, resting her thin fingers on Yelena's nervous ones.

"You really must do something about that babling problem dear," she smirked, patting the back of her hand. "It's highly unattractive, and for you, being this young in your life, you need as few unattracive qualities as you can possibly scrape by with. I know an excellent linguist in Paris if you'd like me to reccommend you." She lifted her hand, lightly scraping her nails against Yelena's knuckles as she reached for her wine glass.

"An overbearing mother?" Evangaline asked, sipping her wine. "Poor thing, the last thing a plain girl like you needs is someone to--" She was cut off by a nasty choking sound from down the table. The young man sitting next to Nina, Evangaline thought his name was Shawn but he'd seem of little importance, was holding his throat and turning himself blue in the face.

[i] Oh God, the idiot's allergic to lobster [/i]

But just as the thought passed through her head, he snapped back up, hitting his head with a loud crack of bone on wood and began to laugh like a teenage boy espceially pleased wiht one of his own mediocre pranks.

"On second thought," Evangaline said, loud and clear, so not only Yelena but the clown could also hear. "Your mother might prove better company than the three-ring circus that seems to have magically appeared at the table. At least she might know how to treat hand-carved oak claw-footed chairs older than her [i] entire family line [/i]. " If looks could poison people poor Shawn would have been drowning in his bisque by now.

Evangaline turned back to Yelena, smiling cooly to cover her agrivation.

"I deal in antique jewlry for the most part, to answer your convulted question of earlier," she said, making a pointed glance at Yelena's bare collar-bone. "I'm sure you understand the elegance of rare jewlry and the power it has to make a woman irristable." She touched her own locket, the blood diamond catching the low light and glistening off the silver-ware. "You might benifit from a wonderful antique sapphire pendant that I found in--" Evangaline was once again cut short by another exquisite plate being deposited in front of her. The aroma gve it away instanly--Veal Scaloppine with Lemon and Fennel, a tuscan masterpiece of thinly pounded veal and soft fennel in a lemon and white wine reduction.

"Scaloppine di Vitello con Limone e Finocchio," Evangaline said aloud, continually impressed by the quality of the food, if not the quality of the company. "Mr. Merkan, your chef must have studied in Tuscany."

08/13/2007 8:47 PM

"Do you want some ice for that?"

Shawn shook his head, grateful for the offer and the laugh. "Nah...just a small bump, maybe a headache in the morning. A small reminder to watch my head. Thanks though..."

He was about to continue conversation when he heard Evangaline's voice ring out.

"On second thought," Evangaline said, loud and clear, so not only Yelena but the clown could also hear. "Your mother might prove better company than the three-ring circus that seems to have magically appeared at the table. At least she might know how to treat hand-carved oak claw-footed chairs older than her [i] entire family line [/i]."

Shawn returned Evangaline's look, though he felt a hot flush of embarassment come over him. When she turned backed to Yelena, he looked at his hands and frowned, forcing them to quit clenching and unclenching. He glanced sideways over to Nina as a plate of meat was set in front of him.

"I dunno about being the first victim. What would the murderer gain? Her," nodding his head towards Evangaline, "on the other hand...the killer would get jewelry and a Jag, and we'd get more politeness. However, seeing that everyone would gain from this, that just made it that much more unlikely to happen to her first."

"Scaloppine di Vitello con Limone e Finocchio,"

[i]So she knows Italian...why am I not surprised?[/i]

He turned to face Nina, a sly grin crossing his face.

"Lovely...she appears to be educated as well. That's a shame. She'd probably be worth talking to, mais la madame est une salope pimbeche."

He cut a piece off the meat in front of him, savoring the spiced flavor.

"The meat's good though. And the chair's not killing me this time."

[Edit: OOC - If you really want the translation from French, I'll give it. Zombie'll wanna kill me, but still. Lol, just remember, it's not me against her, it's our characters.]

[Edited by StoicFervor on Wednesday, August 15, 2007 5:04 AM]

08/14/2007 1:16 AM

"It's always a good thing when the furniture remains docile. A propos notre amie charmante, un peu sévère, Monsieur- mais indubitablement vrais, je pense*".

[i]J'imagine aussi qu'elle connaît le français.[/i]

The smile faded as she looked down at her plate again.

[i]Of course. It had to be veal. Why does 'expensive' equate with 'barbaric', I wonder. Probably be poached foetuses for dessert...[/i]

She tossed her napkin over the plate to cover the meat, regretting letting the maid take the bread basket away.

Sighing quietly she contented herself with drinking from one of the beautifully cut long-stemmed crystal glasses.

"Good thing I had that mint three hours ago- completely took the edge off my appetite".

[i]*"Regarding our charming friend, a little harsh, Sir- but undoubtedly true, I think".

I imagine she also knows French[/i]

It's been a while, and it's too early for conjugating so forgive the grammar!]

edit: tags

[Edited by nanuk on Tuesday, August 14, 2007 1:18 AM]

08/15/2007 5:38 AM

Yelena watched out of the corner of her vision as the darkly dressed man's trick backfired on him. She stifled a giggle, but still smiled at his clumsiness.

However, the smile quickly faded as Evangeline resumed talking. This wasn't a conversation, it was an advice-giving session. But what was she going to do? It wasn't as if she could just stop the interaction. The giant snowball was already rolling downhill.

"I don't wear jewelry," she replied quietly, taking advantage of the pause caused by the arrival of the next course. About to continue, she remembered the other woman's comment about 'babbling', and took a large bite of veal instead.

08/15/2007 6:44 PM

"Good thing I had that mint three hours ago- completely took the edge off my appetite".

Shawn managed to both conceal his surprise at Nina's bilingual response and stop himself from rolling his eyes at her last comment. If she didn't want to eat, who was he to persuade her? Glancing across the table at Evangaline, he noticed Yelena taking advantage of the cook's skills, although it was a pretty large portion.

[i]Is she that hungry, or that eager to distract herself from Ms. High and Mighty's talk? Can't say I blame her either way; the food's great, and I think I'd rather risk choking to death than suffer slowly.[/i]

Reaching forward, he lifted his glass of wine to his lips and tasted it, surprised that it's flavor went well with the meal. He took another larger drink, then tilted his glass towards Nina.

"And this should take the edge off the socially select, though I doubt less than a bottle would ease Yelena's discomfort. Not bad stuff though. More of a beer and liquor man myself, but I suppose I can get by for the night."

He grinned and shook his head slightly.

"Just don't expect me to drink the wine and become Don Juan Casanova. The little French I remember I learned in high school, and most of it are the phrases that would get me detention."

He finished his veal and leaned back in the chair, eyes glancing out the window into the still stormy night as he waited for the next course. Looking outside, he watched as a lightening bolt ripped through the black sky, turning the darkness to daylight for part of a second, the trees looking like ancient beasts dancing in the wind. He looked back to Nina.

"So...if I'm to be the first victim, do I get the luxury of dessert, or is there a flash of lightening, the power goes out for a few seconds, and then it returns to find me held up in the chair by a butcher's knife through my body?"

08/20/2007 6:36 PM

Charles Merkan was pleased to see his guests were becomming more settled in. Dinner had progressed nicely and soon desert would be served and they could engage in more social conversation.

[i] Ah, right on time[/i] he thought as Sarah and Harold returned with trolleys pilled high with exotic cakes and pies.

The flamboyant woman's (OOC: zombie, lol, sorry if I chose a bad adjective) comment about her cooking had pleased her very much. She had replied in her soft and squeaky tone "Thank..... Thank you...."

(OOC: A dinner progresser post, once again forgive shortness but its all I can manage. As for nanuk's suspision with me joining the mafia RP, lol. The reason why Is because I liked the idea and it was a weekand so I had the time to make a character)

08/26/2007 2:32 PM

"Well we've already had a power cut- do we think our host is dramatic enough to want something different, or the type to stick to what works? I think that knife idea would be his style- he seems like a classicist. Ooh- food I may be able to eat!"

Her attention was drawn involuntarily to the heavily-laden dessert trolleys.

Once the maid had finished fawning over Evangeline and her compliment and finally made her way to their side of the table Nina tapped her lip, musing on which of the delicacies to have.

"Hmm... some of [i]that[/i] please," she pointed to a perfectly amber-glazed apricot tarte tatin, "and- are those raspberries?"
Sarah nodded mutely.
"Oh nice- some of that as well then, please".
Along with the tarte Sarah gave her a thick slice of a hazelnut meringue roulade bursting with cream and beautifully plump raspberries.

Smiling her thanks Nina's eyes closed in bliss and she sighed in deep contentment at the first bite of meringue.
"Oh my God... woman's a genius".

She glanced out the window, a flash of lightning revealing a backdrop that could have come straight from a William Castle film.

"Maybe this is the next step in the nefarious plan- inebriate us with alcohol and sugar so that we're less wary and easy to pick off one by one."
She hummed happily around a mouthful of raspberries before adding "Can't say I mind too much at the moment".

09/01/2007 7:38 PM

Dinner ended abrubtly as Merkan stood from the table, the dishes were left for the maid and butler to clean.

Everyone rose from their seats as Merkan led them all back to the library where the evening resumed.

John more frequently found himself stairing at the pictures that adorned the wall, they were of many people John had never seen before. At one end of the hall was a large portrait of Charles Merkan himself....

(OOC: Sorry its short, but Im busy right now)

09/02/2007 8:27 AM

"I don't wear jewelry," she replied quietly, taking advantage of the pause caused by the arrival of the next course.

Evangaline gave the young lady a reproaching look. For her, not wearing jewelry was like admitting you went out in public in your underwear-[i]mismatched[/i] underwear.

"How unfortunate," she said piercingly. "You'd probably benifit from a distraction against that painfully plain face of yours." She turned back to her veal and ate carefully until the dessert cart was rolled onto the floor. Everything looked perfectly prepaired and massivly fattening; Evangaline gave a psuedo-sweet smile to the maid and waved her past with one crimson-nailed hand.

"It looks scrumptious," she said aloud. "But everything goes straight to the thighs," she shot a withering look at Nina as she finished her sentence. "Wouldn't want that, now would we?"

Instead of dessert, she contented herself by searching for and pricing the antiques in the room in her head until Merkan aburptly rose from the table and led them back into the library, the place they'd all congregated beforehand. She could feel her heels sinking into the rich carpet and smell the leather and book bindings-it was almost too picturesque to be real. She brushed a hand along the back of a brocade sofa as she moved in a flash of silk to examine a shelf of books.

09/02/2007 1:21 PM

Shawn merely shrugged.

"Wasn't here for the power cut. See what happens when you run late, you miss the good stuff."

He had been expecting Nina to pass on dessert as well, so he was slightly shocked when she took two items off the tray. Starting to feel full, he settled for just a slightly immodest sized slice of chocolate mousse, topped with whipped cream.

[i]So she does eat food. That's good.[/i]

He had only taken his first bite when Evangaline made her comments to Yelena and Nina. He resisted the sudden impulse to fling the first food item he could reach from the dessert tray into the socialite's direction. He forced himself to finish his mousse, reminding himself over and over that they were all guests of Mr. Merkan, and should act accordingly. While it kept him rooted in his chair for now, it didn't stop him from wishing her ill intent.

He had barely set his spoon down when their host wordlessly stood up and walked out. As other guests rose, he scrambled to his feet, following down the hallway he'd come down when he first arrived and through a set of double doors. During the walk, he'd made it a point to stay away from "the devil in red," which was actually one of the nicer ways he'd come to think of Evangaline.

[i]Lovely dinner party so far. Set in a large manor in the middle of nowhere during a storm, with Ms. Uppity as one of the guests. Well, at least the others seem like they're normal. Wonder if I should try to pull Yelena away from her? I don't know how she can put up wi- damn that's a lot of books.[/i]

Coming to a dead stop about a meter into the library, he couldn't help but stand there, slightly slackjawed as he looked about, hands hanging idly by his sides as he took small, slow steps, turning to view the entire library.

[i]And I thought Cliff had a good collection. Look at the size of this place![/i]

He let his eyes wander over the closest bookshelf, noting that all the titles there appeared to be originals. Shakespeare...Poe...Emerson...Dickens...Emerson...Homer...Twain...Verne...any classic author he could think of or remembered reading in school seemed to be on that shelf. His eyes followed the stairs up to the second floor landing that made a horseshoe around the walls, with the outer wall being the only vacant one. He noticed the chandelier, the leather furniture, and the brick fireplace. He couldn't help but feeling overwhelmed by the sheer subtlety of the place. While worth a fortune, it seemed a place anyone could walk in and just settle down.

Almost silent words left his mouth, perhaps the largest understatement he'd made lately.

"Very nice."

09/06/2007 5:46 AM

Yelena could feel hot tears threatening at the corners of her eyes. She had somehow offended this beautiful, perfect, paragon of a woman, who was now concentrating on the food, furniture, and girl across the table as if she had never even noticed Yelena's presence.

She dragged the fork through the dish, not eating but simply waiting for it to vanish from her sight. Staring down the meat, she felt the imminent shifting of her facial muscles as a flood of humiliation washed over her. Who was she to entertain the notion that such people would deign to talk to her. Her mother had been right. This party was a disaster waiting to happen. She shook her head slightly, allowing several loosened strands of hair to block her face from view as the first tears fell into the perfectly prepared Veal Scalloppine.

By the time the dessert tray rolled around she was more or less under control. Not looking farther than the various confectionaries, she picked up the closest one- a sorbet bombe- and consumed it with all the elegance and appreciation of a robot.

As the group moved back into the library Yelena decided to avoid further conversation by browsing the laden bookshelves. Perusing idly through what appeared to be originals of some of the greatest books ever written, she was struck by a sudden idea. What if...but no, no way. She fairly flew along the wall, fingers skimming past gilded titles on aromatic leather, until the books turned distinctly thinner.

"Not...possible," she murmured, pulling one of the fragile paper volumes from its place. "Why are these on shelves? They should be in cases!" she flipped the loosely bound pages gingerly, shaking her head in disbelief. "They're all here. Chopin, opus ten and twenty-five etudes...autographs. Autographs! Where did he get these? They must just be copies."

She looked back at the shelf, and decided there could be no doubt of the authenticity. She sank to the floor and, like a greedy child in a toy store, began examining the hand-bound manuscripts with reverence.

[Edited by infamously_delirious on Thursday, September 6, 2007 6:04 AM]

09/08/2007 9:13 AM

Evangeline's comment, which she no doubt thought a stinging barb, had only served to make Nina enjoy her dessert even more. She'd refrained from pointing out that some people didn't have thighs that needed worrying about, but didn't want to sink to the woman's petty, if acerbic, level.

When they'd withdrawn once more to the library, the tartness of the raspberries still making her jaw tingle pleasantly, she'd taken the chance to browse briefly, enjoying the wonderfully eclectic collection.

Moving passed Yelena, who was seated entranced on the floor, she'd found an early edition of Milton's [i]Paradise Lost[/i] in amazingly good condition, bound in soft, honey-coloured leather, and the thin, smooth pages edged in gold gilt. Murmuring with pleasure, she all but purred over it, letting her fingertips only barely touch the creamy paper.

[i]Thus repulsed, our final hope
Is flat despair: we must exasperate
The Almighty Victor to spend all his rage;
And that must end us; that must be our cure-
To be no more.[/i]

09/22/2007 6:03 AM

Merkan smiled at all of the compliments, he spoke loudly, his inner child bragging, "I assure you all, they are not fakes, this house has been in my family for so many generations, the house and everything in it is as real as the clothes you wear"

John ignored the conversation taking place, he was walking past a bookshelf, scanning the titles. He selected a hard cover book of Poe short stories and poetry. He sat down in a very comforatable arm chair, his hands running through the creamy white pages.

Jamie Tan, who had been silent the whole time, piped up asking "Pardon me sir.... but I was hoping you could tell me where the restroom is?" Merkan looked over to the young boy.

He replied "Of course, out the door, down the hall on the right, door at the end of the hall"

"Thank you"

Jamie left the room rather hurredly and soon everything returned to normal, coversation resumed, people began looking through the books again, everything was absoulutely normal.

Thats when they heard it, it pierced the silence that hung over the room. It silenced everyone, John strained his ears to hear if it was real. Had he heard it? Was it real? His worst fears were confirmed when it happened again.

It was the Scream....

The screams were of extreme terror, long and drawn out. There was also the faint report of glass and other things breaking. John looked around the room, all of the people were present except for....

[i] JAMIE! [/i]

John jumped from his seat, tossing the book aside, it skidded across the floor. John ran out of the room, Merkan followed closely behind. Another scream was heard again, this time, coupled with the unmistakable shattering of glass. John sprinted down the hall toward the bathroom door.

He reached it, his hand slamming down on the handel attempting to turn it. The door was locked. John slammed his shoulder into the door, attempting to break the lock. He failed miserably. Another scream was heard, coupled this time with a disgusting gushing sound.

Merkan had disappeared earlier, John saw him run down the opposite hallway. He returned a few seconds later, this time he was holding a polished silver 6-shot revolver.

"Stand back" He ordered as he aimed the gun at the door. Merkan fired two shots into the lock of the door. John stepped forward and kicked the door with the sole of his foot as hard as he could. The door, already splintered badly from the bullets, fell away at an awkward angle. The site before them was simply revolting.

The once white marble floors were now stained crimson, along with the sink and walls. A blood-trail led from the center of the chamber to a small window. The small rectangle window was what you would typically see in a basement. The glass on the window was shattered, the shards littered the floor. The wind from the storm outside howled as rain flew in the window, wetting the blood down. The blood ran from the center of the room, up the wall, and out the window. The glass mirror, once surrounded by gold was now shattered and covered in blood. In the center of the floor, the place where the most blood was, a small amulet rested, covered in blood. Next the amulet, was a human ear.

John staggered, almost falling, his hand found a place on the counter not covered in blood. Merkan's jaw had dropped in shock.

[i] My....god... [/i]

[Edited by Darthwedge on Saturday, September 22, 2007 6:04 AM]

09/26/2007 5:19 PM

Shawn had pulled a copy of [i]Stranger in a Strange Land[/i] off the shelf and started browsing through it when the scream pierced his thoughts.

[i]What the...[/i]

Dodging a book that another guest had sent sliding across the floor, he raced down the hallway, following an older man in a blue suit. As the man tried to open the door to the room that was producing the screams, a gushing sound was heard as well. Shawn felt his stomach tighten involuntarily, almost certain that the churning fluid wouldn't be water. He stood back, watching as their host shot the lock of the door out before Blue Suit kicked it in.

The sight made his stomach curl again. It seemed as if the entire bathroom had been repainted blood red. Shawn stood there in shock for a minute, taking in the scene before turning away and leaning against the hallway wall, one arm across his stomach, the other hand over his mouth. He found himself taking deep breaths to calm both him and the case of nausea he suddenly developed. It was several long, dragging seconds before he trusted himself to speak, although his voice had lost any hint of carefree humor it had at dinner.

"Shouldn't we call the police?"

10/04/2007 9:20 AM

[i]Oh Jesus...[/i]

Nina had stood mutely for a moment after the scream, momentarily refusing to acknowledge that she'd heard it, despite that it had made her jump.

Then she'd found that her feet had started moving, following Shawn and the others out of the room in the direction of the sound. The deepest, most primal part of her screamed that that was [i]not[/i] the right way to go, but- whether from herd mentality of something else- she'd kept following.

Her pace had slowed as she'd neared the room, the others standing around the door; but tightly enoug to black everything from sight. Her stomach felt as if it had simultaneously jumped fifteen feet awhile managing to drop through the floor, the forewarning taste of bile flooding her mouth as the sugary remains of her dinner threatened to reappear.

She stepped back, closing her eyes and taking deep breaths through her mouth, her brain not even attempting to pretend that she hadn't seen what she'd seen. It had only been for a second, but the image was burned like a photograph on her retinas: small, jagged glimpses of the room, surreal through gaps in legs and between elbows, tiny flashes of white disappearing in pools of deep, garish red.

[i]oh so much red...[/i]

She'd never seen a body before, not a human one: not as much as an open casket at a funeral. It wasn't that she was squeamish, she just found the whole thought slightly obscene, like spying on someone when they're helpless and vulnerable. A body's just a body, she'd always thought, what really matters of it is gone when it dies, the person it was isn't there anymore, so there was no need to wail and mourn over a poor remnant.

But it was very hard, seeing all that blood, to not think of the person it had belonged to.

10/23/2007 7:32 PM

At the sound of the scream Yelena flinched violently. The priceless pages fluttered from her hands and she jumped to her feet. Watching as the majority of the group sprinted towards the source of the horrible noise, she couldn't bring herself to move. A lump of panic rose in her throat. Finally, at the sound of gunfire, she forced herself to walk quickly out the library door and to the scene of the chaos.

At first it was only the backs of horrified people, pressed together and too tall for her to see over, peering into the splintered doorway. As she craned her neck- for, despite all the fright there was still human curiosity and a repressed primeval fascination with bloody guts- someone in front of her shifted and she was engulfed in a nameless fear.

The sight was horrible, even worse than an actual dead body. Here was just the implied killing, bespattering the walls like the victory rites of a maniacal cultist, the ear and amulet his unhallowed sacrifices.

It only took a few seconds to sink in, and the last thing Yelena thought before she slumped to the ground in a dead faint was-

10/24/2007 7:47 PM

Daniel was glad that he had to make a pit stop in the small gas station in town. He had just finished buying a small snack in case he was too late for dinner when it had started to rain, and had gotten a cheap umbrella too. When he was paying for his items, he asked the young cashier who was working there if he knew where Merkan Manor was. The boy laughed as if he knew some sort of secret, and gave him directions, giving him an evil smile as he walked out.

Daniel sang along with one his favorite songs as he drove up the hill, stopping halfway through the chorus of I am the Walrus to gape at the mansion. Was the invite sent to him by mistake? He figured that would probably be the case. He thought about turning around and just leaving, but decided to see if he was who they were expecting, and it wasn't a mistake at all. He parked as close to the mansion as possible, staying inside the car to finish the rest of I am the Walrus.

A minute later Daniel stepped out of the car and quickly opened his umbrella. He fumbled around with his suit case and guitar case and figured that it would be to hard to carry both up to the door at the same time. He grabbed his suit case first, hurried to the door, dropped it in what looked like a relatively dry spot, and ran back to the car. He grabbed his guitar case, locked the car and ran back to the door. His suitcase was still there, and still dry. He closed the umbrella and knocked on the door as loud as he could. For all he knew, they could be asleep by now.

While waiting for someone to answer the door, he looked around courtyard. Until now, he hadn't noticed exactly how creepy the place was. He could imagine a countless number of eyes staring at him through the darkness. He shivered and looked back at the door.

[i]There isn't anything out there, you're just scaring yourself.[/i]

10/26/2007 8:58 AM

John, stepped back from the room, crossing the arched threshold. He grasped at the handle of the destroyed mahogany door, he shut it so that no one could continue looking at it. He leaned against the wall and slowly slid down the wall and slumped against the ground.

"Shouldn't we call the police?"

John was breathing heavily, to awestruck and horrified to answer the young man. Suprisingly, it was Merkan who replied. "Yes" He gasped for air "Yes we will" He slowly walked away from the door, the gun still in his hand. He walked over to a beatifully crafted ornate table pressed against the wall, the flowery design of the cloth that covered it gave a feeling of hope. There was an antique phone sitting on it, next to it, was a bowl of assorted fruits in which that Merkan laid his gun beside it.

His eyes filled with determination, determination to catch the person who could have commited such an attrocity, he picked up the phone. As he put the reciever to his ear, his eyes revealed all that he was feeling, they were filled with horror.

He spoke quietly and solemnly, "The line is dead, the storm must have knocked out the phone lines. Does anyone have a cell phone?"

It was John to speak next, "I-" He stuttered "I left mine in my car, does anyone have one on them?"

They were interupted by a loud knock upon the large front door situated down the hall. Merkan quizically looked down the hall at the door.

"It, it must be one of the guests, I did invite another person who hasn't shown yet. Harold" He looked at the tall butler "Go see who it is"

Harold walked fast, taking long strides toward the front door and answered it. He opened the door and looked at the man standing there with a wet umbrella.

"Can I help you?" He asked in his deep and ominous voice.

10/26/2007 10:38 AM

Daniel stood quiet a moment staring at the man who had opened the door. He assumed it was either Merkan or his butler. Surely a man who had enough money to afford this place wouldn't send his other guests to open the door. If there were any other guests that is.

"Can I help you?"

"Oh.. uh... I was invited here. This is a..."

He turned away from the man and opened the front of his suitcase and pulled out the invitation. He closed his suitcase and quickly read the name of the house he was at before holding it out for the man to take incase he had to see it before Daniel could come in.

"This is Merkan Manor right?"

He tried to look around him to see what might be happening inside. He could see a hallway where it looked like everyone was gathered.

[i]They might be going on a tour through the house! So I'm just on time for dinner![/i]

He smiled as he looked back at the man blocking him, waiting for him to take the invitation and let him inside.

[Edited by Neon_nightLight on Friday, October 26, 2007 10:41 AM]

10/27/2007 9:11 AM

Harold looked at the man, then turned back and looked at his Master, Merkan. Merkan gave him a quick nod to let the man in and Harold stepped aside, taking the two suitcases and umbrella.

Merkan walked up to the new man and shook his hand. "Welcome Daniel, we have been expecting you, I am Charles Merkan, that was Harold and these are the rest of the guests" He pointed out everyone then returned to the heap of people, "We should get out of this hallway and go sit down"

John looked at the young girl, Yelena, who had passed out and was lying on the floor. John spoke softly, barely above a whisper, "We should move her back into the library"

Merkan nodded and the two of them lifted her up and walked toward the Library door. The entire crowd of horrified people piled into the library, Yelena was set down on a couch and the rest of everyone sat or stood.

John looked at everyone gravely, "Does anyone have a cell-phone?"

(OOC: Sorry for minor geo bunnying, but now we get have another long conversation, where we reveal the story to Neon and I get to introduce new plot points.)

10/27/2007 10:07 AM

Shawn followed Blue Suit (John) and Mr. Merkan back to the library as they carried Yelena between them. Some sudden impulse caused him to divert through the dining room into the kitchen, hurriedly wrapping some ice in a large embroidered napkin. Running back to the library, he slowed to a rushed walk in time to hear John.

"Does anyone have a cell-phone?"

Walking to the couch, he lightly ran his fingers through Yelena's hair before holding the ice over the small bump that had formed. Reaching into his pocket, he pulled out his cell phone, flipping it open.

It's funny how a small electronic device could change a person's mood so dramatically. A sinking feeling had filled him when Merkan had announced that the land line was dead. Hopes buoyed at the mention of a cell phone, they sank again as he looked at the screen. Closing his phone, he looked up at Blue Suit as he tucked his phone back into his pocket, forcing out a small laugh.

"Good news: free night and weekend minutes. Bad news: no signal. The mountains must be blocking it out."

Sighing, he sat on the edge of the couch's arm, one hand holding the ice to Yelena's head as he first looked around the room, then down at his lap, surprised to see his other hand trembling slightly.

[i]What the hell's going on here?[/i]

10/30/2007 3:18 PM

Daniel was about to tell Harold to give him back his guitar case when Merkan shook his hand.

Welcome Daniel, we have been expecting you, I am Charles Merkan, that was Harold and these are the rest of the guests

"Hello, Mr. Merkan."

Daniel used his free hand to wave at everyone in the hall.

"Hello everyone."

We should get out of this hallway and go sit down

Daniel followed Mr. Merkan, about to ask him where he could find his guitar when he was distracted by something else. Someone was passed out in the hall. He decided that questions could wait as he followed everyone to the Library. Daniel didn't notice the broken door.

In the Library, Daniel stood a little ways away from everyone, but not to far away. He glanced at the books on the shelf next to him as he waited for Mr. Merkan, or one of the other guests, to tell him what was going on, and if he was, in fact, late for dinner.

11/02/2007 3:47 PM

Having trailed to the library dazedly Nina's sense of surreality was increased by the arrival of a new guest; a young, blond-haired man in his mid twenties who seemed almost blissfully unaware that anything out of the ordinary had happened.

She stood at the window opposite the door to the room, arms folded tightly across her chest and eyes staring blankly at the patterned rug.

[i]Is this actually happening?[/i]

She couldn't shake the feeling that this was some awful, awful joke orchestrated by their host as part of the evening's events. She wouldn't have put it past his sense of theatricality, but glancing at his face... either he was the greatest loss to acting never discovered or he was as shocked as they.

She glanced over to the couch, where Shawn still tended to Yelena. The girl was still pale but a little colour seemed to be coming back to her cheeks.

Taking a few steps over towards the new arrival she smiled faintly, and more than a little halfheartedly.
"'m Nina. In the history of bad timings... man..." she shook her head, unsure to actually phrase the words.
"Ah, we just- I think- one of the other guests is... dead. I think."

It sounded ridiculous, but what had she actually seen?

She turned slightly to better face the rest of the people in the room, her voice still low.
"Should one of us try to drive down? Get a signal or get to a phone?"

11/02/2007 6:00 PM

Merkan glanced over to the new guest, Daniel, who was perplexed about the current situation. Merkan's eyes met the other mans then quickly fell to the floor again, eye contact being very frightening in the current situation. The chilling silence that continued for a few very long moments until one of the guests, Nina, worked up the courage to tell the man.

"Ah, we just- I think- one of the other guests is... dead. I think."

Merkan, without raising his eyes, said "I am afraid thats its true, one of the guests, Jamie Tan, well... Jamie has been murdered, in the washroom..."

"Should one of us try to drive down? Get a signal or get to a phone?"

Merkan again looked at Nina and answered her question with a horrific answer in the same low tone. "I don't think that would be possible, you see, these rain storms we constantly get always flood the river at the base of the mountain. The road would be completely blocked, you would just waste your gas"

John looked at Merkan with an accusation, "Then what in the hell are supposed to do now, just wait here till morning while the killer can easily pick more of us off?!"

"Well-" Merkan sighed, "I'm afraid so...."

11/04/2007 9:53 AM

John looked at Merkan with an accusation, "Then what in the hell are supposed to do now, just wait here till morning while the killer can easily pick more of us off?!"

"Well-" Merkan sighed, "I'm afraid so...."

Shawn looked up from Yelena, looking at the others, watching their actions. John seemed upset to be here, which was understandable. Nina seemed ok, just in a slight state of shock, but that seemed to be lifting now. Merkan seemed calm, despite all that was occuring under his roof. And this new arrival seemed blissfully ignorant of everything.

[i]A group of complete strangers show up for a dinner party. Cut off from civilization in a mansion on a mountainside, storms pounding against the windows as a killer wanders the grounds. What kind of B-rated Hitchcock horror movie re-make did I end up in?!![/i]

"We just wait? Wonderful...."

He let a note of sarcasm drip off the last word, looking around the library. Lots of ways in and out of here. Not the most secure of rooms, though it seems the one that everyone's most comfortable in. Despite the chill of fear he felt, he tried to force out a laugh at the entire situation.

"So...everyone stays in the same room and no one leaves alone, right? What about weapons, supplies, etc? I don't know about everyone else, but attempting to swim the river sounds good right now, because I've seen this movie before. Wasn't it Col. Mustard in the Conservatory with the Candlestick?"

11/04/2007 3:49 PM

Wasn't it Col. Mustard in the Conservatory with the Candlestick?"

Daniel laughed.

"Aw, yeah, I was thinking that too. So what? Is this one of those dinner games, like the real life version of Clue then?"

He glanced around the room. He had already known the answer with how everyone was taking this so seriously. With a sigh, he went back to looking at the books.

"You know what? If it's not, then don't tell me. I want to stay out of all of this, just show me where my room is so I can go to sleep, and leave in the morning."

He paused for a moment, then added:

"I'm really tired from the long drive."

He was lying of course, he really just wanted to eat his back-up dinner and play some guitar. He would wait until the storm ended and then leave, even if it was the middle of the night or two in the morning. He would get across the river somehow, then go into town and get help. He would stay in a hotel until he was able to get his car across as well, then good-bye creepy mansion and murder suspects, hello home! The mansion gave him the creeps, and Walter had only made it worse. The faster he left, the better he would feel.

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