2019-10-10 - Flying Heads and Heady Magicians


Brunnhilde seeks out Zatanna for some magical knowledge with her latest hunt.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Thu Oct 10 06:19:58 2019
Location: RP Room 1

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Theme Song



The Beacon Theater in New York is a nice venue, often freqently by a variety of performers. Magic shows, in particular, seem to gravitate towards it…perhaps because the name is auspicious or simply because agents tend to like the 'magical' implications of a beacon. The show was good, and well attended for a midweek show, in fact! Perhaps not as great as the larger weekend shows, but it was partly for charity for a local children's hospital, so it all balances out.

Backstage, as always, is a rush of activity with stagehands and other workers behind the scenes breaking the sets down or carrying materials back and forth. Among that sort of controlled chaos, a woman in a SECURITY shirt doesn't stand out. She looks like she should BE in security, certainly; she has a definitely Amazonian look to her, over six feet, muscular, with dusky skin and straight red hair she pulls back in a braid that falls down her back to the middle of her shoulders. In addition to the simple black security shirt, she wears dark jeans, biker boots, and a 'I'm totally supposed to be here and I have something important I'm doing' look on her face, in addition to a black duffel slung over a shoulder.

If the shirt isn't 'exactly' the style of shirt security for the venue wear, no one is questioning her quite yet as she wanders backsage, until she finds the dressing rooms, searching for the correct one, then knocking at Zatanna's door.

Luckily no one has noticed that the duffel is…squirming slightly. And has a dark stain along the underside.

"Yeah, come in," Zatanna calls. She's lucky she already had her dressing gown on, so the person at the door needn't wait for her to scrabble for clothing. She's cleaning off her makeup at the moment (people would be amazed how much foundation and rouge it takes to look like a living human being under stage lights), sitting in her chair, so she regards the security guard in the mirror rather than directly.
Zatanna knows everyone on her crew. She has to, with an enemy list like hers. Whoever this is, it's not one of her employees. She doesn't let that show, though, as she asks casually, just playing along for now, "What can I do for you?"

Hilde opens the door and simply steps in, closing the door behind her. There's not a lot of "subtle" in her, but she doesn't do anything like looking around suspiciously or such. She's very directly.

Which is why she leads with. "Miss Zatara." She sets the duffel down carefully. There's physicality to her presence, but not a sense of threat, at least. "I'm Brunnhilde. I have an issue I need to deal with, and I need someone who knows magic."

"Bad enough to sneak into my show?" Zatanna observes. "Who did you have to knock out to steal that shirt from them?"

"No one. Technically." the tall woman says, slightly evasively. Really, security shouldn't be doing private time with one of the waitstaff instead of their job, anyway, she figures. "I didn't have a lot of time, is all." She toes the bag. Which wiggles. "This thing won't die. And it needs to. It's been feeding on people. But nothing seems to really disable it for long, it just…regenerates."

Zatanna lets that go, finally turning her makeup chair to face Brunnhilde. Her posture is relaxed and even languid, pressed back into the leather as like a sultana in her velvet-cushioned throne. Never let them see you sweat.
"You can tell me what you mean, but you should know right now I'm not an assassin or a hit man. So depending on your story, maybe I'll help you and maybe I won't."

Hilde snorts. "I don't need an assassin." she grunts. "I hunt monsters. It's a monster. I just can't kill it as of yet. It's been feeding on a neighborhood in Queens. Filipino. Not something I've run into before." She purses her lips. "it's messy too…I knocked it cold and gagged it, but it's healed all the wounds done to it, and considering the mess it is, that's something."

Zatanna glances at the bag, then up (and up, and up) at Brunnhilde. "Okay. What is it?"

The ex-Valkyrie hesistates. "…it's…a head." she admits after a moment. "But with organs still..hanging off it. Fangs. Drinks blood? Flies around like a bat, but without wings."

Zatanna nods. "Is it male or female?" she asks, still lounging back in her chair, arms on the armrests, legs crossed. She looks like she's posing for a photo.

Hilde raises a brow. "…I don't know, it doesn't really have of those parts attached." she says wryly. "I'd guess female? Hard to say, but it's got more feminine features, I guess."

Zatanna nods from her regal seat. "Could be a penanggalan, then, but it sounds more like a manananggal. It's supposed to be destroyed by sunlight, though that's a while off, or by finding its body and filling its empty torso with broken glass so it destroys its organs when it reattaches." Zatanna glances at the bag again, wondering if the thing inside is awake, and if it speaks English. "Do you have some way of finding its body?"

"No, and that's the problem if I need to destroy the body to kill it." the hunter notes, folding her arms. "Didn't know about the sunlight thing, that'd do it too. Was sort of hoping you might know how to find the body. I need to make this disappear…the local police won't understand."

Zatanna notes the forbidding posture. "My best idea at this moment is a bad one," she admits. "Hold onto it for a while, then let it go an hour or so before dawn. It has no choice but to go back to its body; it will die if separated from its body during daylight. We follow it, try to prevent it from reattaching, and stuff its body before it can enter." She pauses, then adds dramatically, "Since it has no hands, its body would have to be somewhere exposed to open air but hidden from sight, like a rooftop or something. If its body is behind a door, then we know it has human help."

Hilde frowns, considering that, then nods curtly. "Seems wise. You're willing to help then? I don't have a lot to pay you, but I'd owe you a favor. And that's no small thing." she says simply.

"I'll help," Zatanna agrees. "But we have a long time to wait, so why don't you tell me about yourself, Brunnhilde? If we're going to be partners, I should know you."

Brunnhilde raises a brow, then shrugs and walks over to pull up a chair, spinning it around to sit on it with her arms resting on the back. "Partners, hmm?" she says, reaching up to scratch her cheek absently, "Hmm. Fine. I'm a monster hunter. Bounties mostly. Human or otherwise. Usually not dead or alive, but in this case the world's a better place with something like this laid ot rest."

Zatanna frowns a little. "Is something wrong, Brunnhilde?" she asks bluntly.

The other woman blinks. "…wrong?" she questions after a moment, tilting her head, as those green eyes watch the magician now. "What do you mean?"

"You're keeping up barriers," Zatanna explains, as she sits in her chair in her dressing robe. There's definitely a layer of vulnerability there. "Your body language says you're shielding yourself from me, putting that chair's back between us, crossing your arms over your vitals. Did I do something to make you feel threatened?"

There's a flash of white teeth at that, as Brunnhilde lets out a low husky chuckle at that, then hmmphs. "Lots of people wanting to poke at my head lately." she says, a faint hint of annoyance in her tone, though more in general rather than focused at Zatanna herself. "It's nothing personal. I've lived long enough in some rough spaces that I'm used to it, I suppose."

"Yet here you are, looking for help from a complete stranger," Zatanna notes, letting the inferences go unspoken.

Another faint shrug. "I know something of magic, and magical creatures, but I'm no expert." the woman says. "I've heard you do your share of good deeds out of the spotlight."

Zatanna nods. "So it's just necessity, then. You'd rather not be here?"

Brunnhilde chews on that a bit, then frowns faintly. "Wouldn't say that. I'm used to being self-sufficient. I haven't had a lot of people to lean on. Until recently." She shrugs again, resting her chin on the back of her hands on the chairback. "No offense intended, but I don't really know you other than by reputation."

Zatanna chuckles at that little pearl. "None taken. Most of the people who know nothing about me but want to hang around with me are men. I can't imagine why," she says wryly, with a pert toss of her hair. "So how did you get into bounty hunting?"

"Oh, I can imagine why." Hilde says with a laugh,s haking her head. "Were I not already taken, I would be seeing how interested you were." Blunt, if anything, is Hilde. "Mmm, there are few ways for someone experienced in hunting monsters to actually earn a living at it these days. Bounties work. It is interesting, at least, and I can use the skills I've acquired to do it. And I have control over who I hunt and why."

Zatanna flashes you a quick but bright smile rather than roll her eyes or tense up. "It's fine, you're too tall for me anyway," she says airily. "So how did you get experience hunting monsters?"

Brunnhilde mock sighs at that. "Yes, I get that a lot. People are too intimidated by tall women in these days." She rises up a bit tilting her head, as if turning something over in her head. "I am Asgardian." she says finally. "Though I have been in exile for some time."

"Asgardian?" Zatanna's eyebrows raise fractionally. Tactfully, she takes the hint not to pursue the exile, and just asks, "Tell me about your abilities. I'd rather know now than have to ask five minutes before dawn."

"What is there to say? I am an Asgardian warrior. I have fought battles for thousands of years. There are few as skilled as I." Hilde says, with perhaps a bit of brag in her voice. "I wield Dragonfang, a sword of power." She reaches behind her back…and suddenly her fingers have closed around a hilt of a sword that just wasn't visible before that as she draws it off her back. It's a a long, shining blade, with Asgardian runes worked in gold into the metal, as she sets it point down on the floor, resting her hand easily on its crossguard.

Zatanna observes the sword, an impressive bit of flash but not terribly useful for what she needs. "I'm trying to understand what tactical abilities you have so we can plan for the future," she explains patiently. "Can you fly? Are you fast? What does it mean to be Asgardian, compared to being human?"

"Never met one of us? I suppose only that pretty boy Thor gets a lot of attention." Hilde says, dismissively. Something in her voice in fact, when she mentions him. "I can bench press a truck, I'm pretty much immune to small arms, I'm not obthered by poison, disease, temperatures, that sort of thing. I've got better than human reflexes." She taps her fingers on the blade. "I can cut most things in half with this…it's always sharp."

Zatanna nods slowly. "So when we let this thing go, it's up to me to keep us up with it. Okay. You're mostly here to restrain it and maybe fight off its cronies if it has any?" she asks.

"Mm, depends. If it's just normal keeping up with it, I can keep pace. Flying make sit harder but not impossible. I wouldnt' say no to a cheat to make it easier though. AS for cronies…as you say. If it has humans helping it for some reason, maybe, though it wouldn't matter. If it's something more monstrous…might matter." Another shrug. She communicates a lot with that.

Zatanna admits, "I think it must have some kind of… controller, I guess. Manananggals almost always limit themselves to pregnant women and newlywed couples, because their demon patron has an abandonment complex." She sneers in unconscious, superior distaste. "For this thing to be attacking people based just on their ethnic background sugests it's being controlled, but I can't say for sure."

Hilde considers that. "Seen it before." she notes. "People get slighted, they turn to dark magic and summoning up things that should stay in the dark. Never ends well. Either they get eaten themselves or they keep going dark until a lot of people end up dying."

Zatanna nods. For the first time, she squirms uncomfortably in her seat, almost imperceptibly. "And for a magician to get access to a demon lord, that usually but not always means a whole cult, not just one wizard."

"To raise the power behind it? Yes." Brunnhilde agrees, frowning. "At least a small coven of them, to raise that kind of power. And probably at least one sacrifice already made to it to bring it here."

Zatanna nods, and finally rises from her dressing chair. "I'm going to go put on clothes," she informs you, just the least bit dryly. "Do me a favor, and make sure that thing is still in the bag? At this point, I can really imagine its master teleporting it out." With that dire warning offered casually, she heads to the room where, presumably, her clothes are.

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