2019-05-24 - Three Bads Make a Good


In the aftermath of the kidnappings, it comes to light that thirteen kids are still missing. Planning ensues for the final part of the Nightfalls downfall.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Fri May 24 02:33:56 2019
Location: Oblivion Bar

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Theme Song



Somedays Keiko life is just weird. Well, most days Keiko's life is just weird now. Today, it's a job at the Oblivion Bar - and wonders of wonders, the tattooed woman didn't get lost finding the entrance.

The work here, at least for Keiko, is relatively mundane - cupboard doors, tap washers and the like. What isn't the clientele. Apart from human wizards and the like, there's beings from other dimensions. Most are settled at tables - talking and drinking. A few are actually playing chess and other board games. Some of the pieces are actually moving …

Hellboy is not moving. Well, not more than he has to. Recent days have been filled with kidnapped children, demonic monsters, evil temptations and a very long ride in the back of a van that hadn't been wiped down since Reagan was President. Lots of bad memories there, all around.

He has a large glass ashtray sat on his table, his feet kicked up on an empty chair as he argues with what appears to be some sort of goblin that's sitting nearby, "I tell you, you put 'King of the Road' on that juke one more friggin' time, Beeble, and I am going to find whatever egg you spawned from, put you back in it, take it out back and fry me up a goblin omelette. Fer criminy's sake, there's Black Sabbath on there, ya mook."

When you want booze and don't really have, y'know cash, and your brother's stash is empty, and you don't want to *steal* it… You come to the Oblivion Bar, where cash isn't always the 'coin of the realm'. Well. You do if you're Illyana Rasputina.

The blonde pushes into the bar, and her black-on-black attire trimmed in silver jewelry and studs doesn't look odd at *all*. Her pale blue gaze sweeps the room, taking in the other patrons. Even if it's neutral territory, it's good to know who is in the room. Her lips quirk into a smirk as Hellboy calls out Beeble. "I'll second Red's choice." She notes as she makes her way to the bar. Hey, it's the most obvious name for the guy she doesn't know. That's a lotta red.

Oblivion Bar is a hangout for some folks in WAND, which isn't real surprising. It's also one of the few places that one can get the kinds of interdimensional booze that certain 'pantheons' are famed for without actually going TO said pantheon. Asgardian Mead is a favorite here - though it kicks like an asgardian mule - as is Nine Thunders Brew and a few other storied drinks.

Koa Turner is off duty. Well, kind of off duty. He's got some work documents with him. There's generally a few people he knows in here when he comes, but… this is more than usual.

"Taking up bartending now, Keiko?" He calls out. She's clearly not, but he teases her anyway and signals to the barkeep. "Vodka. Good vodka if you don't mind. Stolichnaya or something. Don't give me any Smirnoff now. And whatever Keiko wants when she's done."

There's a thump at the far end of Red's table as Koa plops down the paperwork and smirks at the big demon. "Do you EVER fill out your after action forms, Red? Hello Miss Rasputina. Fancy seeing you here. Taking a break from drawing circles in the kitchen?" Granted the last time she did was kind of Koa's fault.

"No, Agent Turner, I have not." Koa can tease Keiko but sometimes it falls flat. The womans grasp on English can be fleeting. Or literal. Take your pick. "I am here fixing the taps and the doors." She frowns at the doors and then at the barkeep "How did you say they were damaged again?"

The barkeep. A tall fae with long golden hair takes down a bottle of vodka from the top shelf and pours three generous measures for Koa. Apparently one of those is for Keiko, the other probably Illyana - she might have been here a time or two. "Some Leprechauns got happy the other day and decided to try to counter racing…." As if that explains it all.

Finishing up, Keiko joins the others at the table, not making eye contact with Illyana and glancing at Hellboy. "There you go Agent Turner. Miss Rasputina." There's a pause "Hello Red, I'm Keiko."

Hellboy snorts at Koa, "Benefits of seniority, kid. I filled out enough o' those back in the day - on a typewriter, mind ya, with only one hand that wouldn't break the thing into ruin. Huntin' an' peckin'. Anyway, it's not like I'm using fancy tactics what need describin'. I hit things and I shot things. You want me to write a novel about it? I met Ernest Hemingway once. He was a dick."

He nods to Keiko. He's regular enough, but not so often that he always knows the employees, "Nice to make yer acquaintance. Good vodka's down under the third cabinet near the end of the bar. I donated it from an old Soviet bunker we raided. The owner was a psychotic mecha-priest who was trying to raise a neverdying spider-god out of old nuclear waste and submarine parts. But he had good booze."

Illyana Rasputina isn't surprised to see Koa here, even if she hasn't run into him before and by now she's not surprised to find Keiko… well, anywhere. The blonde does arch a brow as Koa speaks to Hellboy though. "That's your actual name? If so, someone was *really* not a Creative." It couldn't be that Koa would use a nickname. Koa's way too straightlaced to have y'know, friends.

"Spasibo." Illyana tells the bartender before taking a seat at Koa's table and looking over the paperwork laying there while listening to Hellboy and then grimacing a bit. "Why do evil mages always feel the need to summon icky things?"

"Icky things are the easiest thing to get to listen to you, I figure. But then you probably know a little more than me about that." Koa says as he sits down. "We're not interrupting are we Red? Agent Peters asked me to get your signature on these. I pre-populated them for you."

That would be Pandora Peters he's talking about. A dark skinned woman with a lot of tattoos, though less fanciful than Keiko's. She runs WAND on behalf of the senior SHIELD leadership.

"If you don't mind some company, drinks are on me." Koa means that generally, for Illyana, Keiko and for Hellboy himself.

"Ah yes, introductions, sorry. Hellboy this is Illyana Rasputina and Keiko Kurita. I forget if you might have seen either of them on previous operations, but they were both key to helping rid us of Nightfall. Miss Rasputina, Kieko, this is Hellboy. Agent Hellboy. If he has another name it's classified way above my clearance."

Which could be possible if, say, Hellboy's real name drove people mad, or summoned something or similar. WAND has a few types like that. Koa will let Hellboy himself do further introductions.

Koa is… well okay. He IS kind of straight laced. But in the case of Illyana it's a lot more that he's very careful in how he addresses her. And there are reasons for that. Hey. At least his eyes aren't glowing purple today and he's not drawing in all the magic around him. Which… would not make him very popular here.

Keiko's tattooes are visible - they cover her arms and at least part of her torso. Incredibly detailed animals, so detailed they're almost lifelike - the eyes of one seems to follow the viewer. "Hellboy Agent Hellboy." the tattooed woman repeats dutifully. It's probably a practice to remember names.

"Pozhaluysta" the barkeep nods to Illyana and heads off to the other end of the bar adding "See me before you go, Keiko, and we'll get you your payment."

"A typewriter?" That's got the peruvian mages attention, though it might hard to determine her nationality from that mess of an accent of hers. "Like I see on those old TV shows?" beat "What's the paperwork for, Agent Turner"

Illyana gets the briefest of eye contact before Keiko's eyes slide off to the side. "Maybe those mages don't think those things are icky at all. Each to their own, don't they say?"

"I blame anime. All these creepos anymore get started on anime. Tentacle vaginas and toothy buttholes and all kindsa crazy stuff. All the science nerds watch it and then they go looking up runes in the old sections of the library and before you know it, they're attempting to assemble a ghoulish spectre octopus in their grandma's basement."

"Red suits me just fine. Yeah, I'm an old man, I just age real nice. Good livin' an' lotsa oysters," he says, nodding to the others, regarding Illyana for a long moment, although whether that's due to her demonic elements or simply because she's a hot heavy metal girl in leather is probably hard to say. In truth, it's almost certainly both.

He reaches out and drags the paperwork over to his side, scribbling a large HB in stylized script in the proper sections. "

The paperwork isn't apparently *that* interesting, as Illyana doesn't grab any to take a better look. She does lean over the table a bit to offer her hand over to Hellboy since intros have been made. It gives her a chance to look him over more closely. Him and that hand of his. She looks up at him, pale blue eyes meeting his without flinching. "I'm pretty sure I've read about you in one of my tomes on prophecy."

Illyana doesn't know him, so there's no way she'd know how annoyed it might make him bringing that up. "Nuclear waste is always icky, Keiko." The blonde tells the other woman in an almost chiding manner. Like one might use to school a small child.

Koa looks between the two… infernally inclined people at the table and takes a sip of his drink. "Mundanities mostly, Keiko. Ammunition used. Operational reports. That kind of thing. Stuff that's gotta get filed. WAND is a bureaucracy after all, even if a magical one. Agent Peters knows about Hellboy's… hand. So she asked me to make things simple for him." Doesn't get much simpler than just having him sign, does it?

"You guys might be interested to learn that NYPD is closing out abduction cases and all the kids are being returned to their homes." Koa says, leaning back to take another drink and pauses, looking like he's going to continue when something steals his attention.

"Wait, you have a book on Hellboy? Which means Belasco had a book on Hellboy? Do you know why?"

Even as Koa is asking that Keiko might be noticing a particular… tingling in that brand on her, the one that peeks just above her shirt. It got a LOT more noticeable when she got closer to Big Red here. She knows Koa and Illyana don't set it off.

"Mundanities?" Keiko repeats the word, frowning at it and then giving Koa a look of distaste. "You have to record how much ammunition you use? Does someone have to count shells at the end of an encounter? What happens if you get it wrong?" Her eyes drop to Hellboys hand as Koa mentions, rising to Big Reds eyes for a moment.

She doesn't ask about that, perhaps thankfully. What she does say is "What prophecy?"

Absently she rubs at chest, moving the neckline so more of the brand shows. It's a spidery script that looks like Ogham but reads like Chtonic. And it's glowing ever so faintly.

It must be paining her, for her to rub at it. Illyana knows something of the pain the tattooed woman can bear.

The chiding manner from Illyana gets a stubborn set of the womans jaw. "Which one uses nuclear power?" Which mage, or demon, she means.

Hellboy narrows his eyes at Illyana and there's a flicker of something there in the depths of the golden orbs, like a whisper of shadow, a flame of darkness that burns at the heart of the big monster. He takes a long, long drag on his cigar, inches of ash on the tip before he taps it and exhales through his nostrils like a steaming bull, "Can't believe everything you read, honey. Truth is always stranger than fiction - and harder to predict," he says.

"Not every question needs an answer, Turner. Leave it," he says seriously and levelly, then adds to Keiko. "Prophecy ain't nothin' but another word for guessin' and usually guesses made by people out of their damn gourd. Nobody decides who I am but me. Period."

He leans back a bit and takes a long sip of his beer before speaking again,"Good to hear the kids are goin' home safe. Poor little buggers'll probably have nightmares forever. Hope they got enough insurance to cover all the therapy."

Hellboy's visage is enough to unsettle most people. Add in the shadows that slide behind his gaze and it's not many that will hold it. But Illyana, tiny young wisp of a thing next to Hellboy's bulk, does as that darkness gets a rise out of the cold emptiness that lurk behind that pale blue gaze. She listens, and then reaches out for her drink, tossing the vodka back and then setting the glass down for the bartender to refill it.

Illyana glances over to Koa and Keiko as they each ask after it but when Hellboy says to leave it, she doesn't answer their questions. Instead, she looks back over to Hellboy, a smirk curving her lips. "Black Sabbath, pissing on prophecies, careful Red. You'll make me a fan." Her tone has a playful singsong to it, but her gaze is dead serious. Seems they have some things in common.

"Well, getting the kids back is step one down." Illyana notes, wrinkling her nose a bit as she thinks about 'step 2'.

This is a little bit like watching a dynamo near a metal plate. Sparking and arcing and Koa just sits back and observes. He often does that. Observes. Makes mental notes. Records. Typically he only acts after he's done a whole lot of that. Not that most people would know it from his recent actions.

"Brand bothering you Keiko?" Koa says dryly. He can tell it is. And he's starting to wonder. Illyana looked at that extensively. And they know where it likely came from. It's reacting to something, something quite close.

"You would be a fan." Koa notes of Illyana applauding Hellboy's disdain for prophesy. He doesn't push the matter further at the moment though. People who have the kinds of story told about them that provoke that kind of reaction usually don't like talking about it.

After all, if a prophesy says someone will be successful and happy, wouldn't they be all for that?

"The mage that Red took down years ago used… well not nuclear power. Nuclear waste, it sounded like. Or maybe mad scientist is more like it."

Another sip of the drink. This is good Vodka.

"There are resources to help 'em, counseling and follow ups and so on. But, NYPD thinks they'll be able to close out most of the cases. Bad news is there's still some outstanding. I've been told. Thirteen of 'em to be specific."

Keiko might not be educated, she can barely read and write, but she's not stupid. She sees the flicker of something behind his eyes and the questions about Prophecy stop, cold.

"Hmmmm?" The tattooed woman glances down where her hand is rubbing. "Oh, I guess it is. It kind of hurts. It's only done that when Miss Rasputina … examined … it and when I was near the box …. " There's a long look at Hellboy. "Must be something near by."

"Thirteen kids still missing? That's not good …" Illyana isn't the only one thinking of Step 2 and Keiko draws a deep breath in. "You said you had an idea, Miss Rasputina, to make the Nightfall think they've been betrayed?"

Hellboy nods, "Mad science, mad magick, it all gets a bit fuzzy 'round the edges of reality. Either way, people who gaze too long into the abyss, they usually get all abyssy on the inside. And then they make messes. And then I clean them up," he says with a tight smile. "With help from you lot, of course," he says, raising a bottle to Koa.

To Illyana, he purses his lips, "I dunno if you'd be a bad influence on me or I'd be a bad influence on you. Either way, I think we'd end up in trouble. But we'd have fun," he says. At Keiko's mention of the kids, he nods, "I don't like the sound of that either. That kinda number play always gives bad witch types a case of the stiffies."

The number gives Illyana pause, and she frowns over at Koa. After all, it was mentioned much earlier. When all this started.

Keiko's question derails that thought though, and the sorceress glances about the bar before reaching out to dip her finger in her vodka and sketch a symbol on the tabletop and speak a word. There's instantly a change in the airpressure, like they're in some sort of bubble, and the hubbub of the bar has dimmed considerably. Koa will recognize the simple privacy ward, and while the bartender glances over, those sorts of things are pretty common in here.

Illyana tilts her head towards Hellboy, even though she's looking at Koa. "I figure that since you do his paperwork, he's safe to talk in front of." Unlike others in the bar, which'll let most anyone in. As long as they play by the rules. She waits for Koa's nod before continuing.

Turning to look at Keiko now, Illyana nods. "Each mage's power is like a fingerprint. Or maybe like a scent. It's distinctive, unique, and other mages can recognize it. Thanks to Koa, we happen to have a big ol' bottle of eau de Darque. Which means we *might* be able to make Plokta think think I'm Darque, and that the Nightfall is doublecrossing him."

"Red? Safe?" Koa looks at Hellboy and a ghost of a smile flickers across his features. "I don't know if HE would characterize it that way but he's trustworthy, I'd say. It's probably about as safe as talking to me…" There's a pause and his eyes narrow. "Well, maybe slightly less, only because you have my pen…" A pen that has his blood in it. Trace amounts. He had to replace that pen. It was not cheap. WAND does not issue those pens standard.

Either way Koa lifts his glass in response.

"How exactly did you plan to make Plokta think that, by the way? Does it have anything to do with…" Kieko gets a look now. If Koa's stare could bore through her to her back it would. The blank tattoo there. Or rather the vague outline of one that was started and never finished up.

Keiko recognises the effects of the ward, even if she doesn't recognise the ward itself. She's not a mage but she's the Nightfall mages work enough. Truth be told, she'd seen them work all too much.

"You want to doublecross my Lord?" She still does it, on reflex mostly, calls Plokta her Lord. No one has ever seen her pray to him or do more than that. But does she have to? Or is it believing it enough?

"And how do you plan on calling him"

That outline on her back, itches. She suspects she's not going to like the answer.

Hellboy shakes his head, "I don't care about all the strategery. You tell me who to hit, show me a picture of who to shoot, happy to do it. I just ain't much for wizard talk. It's boring, no offense," he says, getting up from his seat.

"Nice to meet ya, ladies. Don't be a stranger or nothin'. Come over and look me up if you wanna get your little heinies beat in a game of darts later," he says, heading up towards the bar and ordering himself a fresh pitcher. Beeble the Goblin tries to shove up against him and gets elbowed off the bar. Good enough for 'im, the little stinker.

Illyana Rasputina looks over at Hellboy as he excuses himself, looking mildly amused as she nods. The blonde is well familiar with 'hammer' type folks. As he heads out of the little bubble of silence, she turns back to the others, and her pale blue eyes meet Keiko's. "Well. To really sell it, I'd want a loyal minion." There's sarcasm in her tone, but no humor in her gaze.

As to how Illyana plans to call him? The blonde arches a brow. "You're covered in all the keys I need." Sympathetic links aren't always your friend.

Koa waves as Hellboy leaves, gathers the papers up and places them down and out of sight to clear the table. He signals for another round of drinks. They might well need it.

"Do you object to that, Keiko?" Koa doesn't think that she does but it's best to make sure. "Cutting off Plokta's support for Nightfall seems ideal given the circumstances and if he thinks Darque has betrayed him so much the better. Is the plan to just channel that power through a link that she provides?"

That sounds… painful, to be honest.

"I presume you're not planning on doing that FROM Limbo, though. There could be blowback…"

Like… Plokta could attack Limbo. Or at least start scheming in that direction.

"Or are we thinking of getting someone else to do this?" Which, to be honest, could still be painful for Plokta and comes with the added wrinkle that Illyana has to impersonate being someone… pretty damn slimy in the soul department.

"Later …" Keiko watches Hellboy leave. Darts. Now that sounds interesting. She almost follows, but doesn't.

"Where do you plan on finding a loyal minion?" It's a challenge, though a small one. Keiko doesn't meet Illyana's eyes, she knows better, even if she is sassing the Limbo Queen.

At the mention of keys, she rubs the tattooes - the brand on her chest fading as Hellboy gets further away. "Does that make you the Gatekeeper or Zuul?" she asks.

"Why would I object to it, Agent Turner? The Nightfall must be stopped."

"We need a spellcaster that can pull off evil. I think we only have one of those, Agent Turner." Illyana says, giving Koa a level look. Someone that can be soaked in Darque's power and not go off the deep end.

Illyana stays looking at Koa even though she speaks to Keiko. "On her knees, at my feet. Even if I have to put her there myself. I mean, loyal's a plus but submissive will work." Her tone carries some of it's usual mocking air, but there's a tightness to her jaw that says she's not *really* playing around. If it'll stop Nightfall… Yes. She'll use Keiko. Even against her will.

"Why do you…" Koa almost asks why she knows that but he's starting to get that she really has in large part learned about the world via pop culture. She seems to know a smattering of old TV from areas she's passed through and he wonders, for a moment, if that's because it was what was on cable in the places she stayed as she was heading north.

"You know you can call me Koa right?" He says, mostly to give himself time to think. "Both of you can." Koa's never one to stand on formalities really. Which does make some of his behavior all the more unusual but there you go.

A thought occurs to him, though, and he doesn't like it. Still… needs must.

"It's possible that you'll need more power than just what's stored in the crystal, though, isn't it? And if you don't do this on Limbo… are you going to have the power you need?"

Keiko gets a sympathetic look. He knows she's all for defeating the Nightfall and he also knows that she's deeply uncomfortable around the Limbo Queen. He gets it. Why she challenges though… well, perhaps that's in her nature? She is rather stubborn. Sasses him all the time… though sassing Koa has far fewer consequences.

"What will be at your fee—-" Keiko starts but stops quickly enough as she gets the gist of Illyana's statement. There's a stubborn set to her jaw as she looks at the table. "You might have to put me there…" she mutters, socce votto. Perhaps not quite enough.

It's a small rebellion and Koa's thoughts aren't far from the truth. There was a reason they took Keiko and put that ink on her skin. There was a reason she survived and controls the spirits bound to her.

"Koa?" She blinks at the Agent. She had to know that was his name, right? Or did she. Maybe she'll remember that later.

For the moment, she waits to hear the answers to Koas questions. She might need the next drink in a minute.

Illyana Rasputina's brows go up and she smirks a bit. "You always call me Miss Rasputina. I figured you liked the formality. Calling you by the familiar *might* help from announcing to everyone in the area you're a 'cop' every time we run into each other, though." She admits.

Koa's question gets a side-to-side tilting of Illyana's head. "If things go smoothly? No." But her tone says it clearly. Since when do things go smoothly? "I'm hoping to prep some artifacts to help with that before going in. Because I'm definitely not going to be able to do this from Limbo."

Illyana blows out a long sigh through her nostrils. "You really do insist on waving the red cape at me, don't you?" Presumably that's said to Keiko. Just as it's in Keiko's nature to fight and be stubborn, it's in Illyana's to enjoy breaking things.

"Formality? Mmm, no not so big on it as it applies to me personally. But you and I don't know eachother well and I didn't want to presume. Besides which, there's a matter of showing respect." Koa deliberately does not say 'Demons tend to be very hierarchical and seem to appreciate having their place on the totem pole acknowledged.' "So, call it being polite."

But no, she doesn't need to call him 'Agent Turner', nor does Keiko. Who… might not have realized that wasn't his name.

"In that case you might…" Koa sighs slightly because he really doesn't like this idea. "… need a battery. And I do have the ability to charge myself up with all kinds of delicious magic, as we have discovered." Well, as they have discovered. He knew that. Though his reaction to Darque's magic was really rather eye opening.

"You've never dealt with creatures from hell realms before have you, Keiko? They're a lot like the predators bound into your arms. Tell me, what happens when you challenge a predator?"

"Is calling you Agent, incorrect then?" It's possible that Keiko thought Agent was Koa's first name.

She'll call Illyana, Miss Rasputina. She knows a predator when she sees one and the fact she doesn't look at the woman means she knows she's skating on thin ice with her stubborness.

"I win, Agent … Koa. And their spirits become mine to call." She says quietly. "But I take it you want me to show my throat, instead."

"I don't think you should do what you're thinking, either, Ag— Koa." She's trying, see!

Illyana Rasputina shakes her head over at Koa. "I think she just can't *help* what she's doing." When Keiko notes that she wins, Illyana nods over to the tattooed woman, gesturing as though to say 'see?'.

"'Agent' is a title. You generally only use titles when you're being formal. Also, if you *do* call him that, everyone in earshot will think he's a cop. A real cop, that is." Illyana says, trying to explain. "Miss and Mister are… lesser titles. Still usually saved for formal situations. I've molested Keiko's spirits and drained your essence, I think you can at least call me by my middle name." The sorceress' tone is a bit mocking and intentionally suggestive.

The amusement fades at Koa's suggestion, and she fixes him with the full weight of her attention. "What I did before, that was very limited. Very *tightly* controlled. With all the safeties engaged. If you play battery for me, there won't be any of that. I can't guarantee you'll get out of it untouched."

"Do you even have a middle name?" Koa mutters, smirking slightly.

"As she says." The next round of drinks arrive and Koa takes half of his in one go. "Agent is my job. It would be a bit like calling you 'Handiman Keiko Kurita'. Or… Ex-Cultist Keiko Kurita." Which is probably a little bit more liable to get her into trouble, which is why he most definitely does not do that.

"Miss Rasputina is, by some lights, a mark of respect." He further explains. "And… show your throat might be a bit extreme but… yes. At least if you plan to help us with this, it'll be necessary. As to whether or not you do it regularly… I'll leave that to you. But the more you challenge her, the more tempted she's going to be to meet that challenge." And he can tell by her posture that she knows that on some level.

"For what it's worth I don't like the idea either, Keiko, but…" Now he looks over at Illyana. "Illyana might need it."

He nods when she outlines the risk. The full weight of her attention is rather… heavy. When Keiko fixes him with a look, it's a look. Maybe an annoyed look. When Illyana does so, those cold eyes seem to bore right into his soul - which is closer to the surface than most people's. Keiko also likely knows what that feels like.

"But you also can't guarantee this plan works without access to another source of magic, and I'm the most easily available one. Plus, having a second minion will help you sell the act."

He knows this is going to be bad for all involved. Wielding Darque's magic can't be good for Illyana. Being used as a conduit can't be good for Keiko and being a battery decidedly won't be good for him. But this is their best shot at cutting the Nightfall off from it's support. So…

Keiko downs her drink in a gulp and looks to the barkeep. Yes. She definitely wants another right now. She really can't help but push back at Illyana - it's so ingrained in her. She wouldn't have survived if she wasn't stubborn.

At least she's teachable. Mostly. Koa might be Koa from now on. Perhaps.

"I've already said I would help …" The spirit caller grouses. She takes a deep breath and doesn't add more. "I don't want you to do it … Koa. I saw what it did to you before and if it goes wrong …"

She won't even question her involvement. In many ways, Keiko feels responsible for all this.

But do they have any choice, really?

"When do you want to do this?"

"Soon." Illyana answers Kieko. Before Darque's magic looses his signature. Before Piotr can try to convince her that he should stand in her stead so that he can assume that risk.

Before she can loose her conviction, and go back to playing it safe.

Illyana looks over to Keiko and gives her a slight smile. "I know you're willing to help. Getting control of your reactions enough to do so might be difficult, though."

The blonde reaches for her drink, draining it in one go and sets the glass down with a thud before wiping a hand down her face and standing. She looks between the both of them. "As long as you go into this with your eyes open. If things go sideways, death might be the least offensive end. And I'll want to know if you prefer that to what I might have to do to you."

"If I go, do what you have to do." That's not much of an answer but Koa isn't really SURE what would happen if he were overcome by his desire to hoard power and it made him a monster. He might be fairly easy to contain. Oooorrrr he might not be. Especially if he just abandoned his body. Which… could happen?

"I appreciate the sentiment, Keiko. But this has to be done and we all have our… price to pay to see it done." He was going to say 'cross to bear' but thought better of it considering the company.

Koa orders one more round and takes a deep breath before letting it out again. In many ways, paying the prices others can't, or won't or shouldn't have to is what WAND is about. Or at least, it's what WAND is about to him. Being those who sit in the shadows so that others may sit in the light.

"I'd say it'll be okay, but honestly I think the truest thing I can say is 'we'll do what we need to do.'" Does that involve them being okay?

Probably not. But they're going to do it anyway.

Keiko's silent for a very long time. Some might call it sullen. "I can act, Miss Rasputina. I can do what needs to be done." It's quiet and perhaps in support of her words, there's no edge or no heat to the words. She has to be feeling both though, doesn't she?

"If things don't work out, put me down." She answers. "If you cause sufficient harm to my bound spirits, that will do that job." It's an offering, at least.

"May I go now Koa, Miss Rasputina?" She has to get her pay and she might want to take a bike through the city.

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