2020-01-27 - Doppleganger


Called to investigate some strange disappearances, Koa and Keiko find someone who looks a lot like Illyana without the creepy vibe.

Log Info:

Storyteller: None
Date: Mon Jan 27 04:47:21 2020
Location: New York

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Theme Song



WAND operatives get sent to the weirdest places. Tonight Koa and Keiko were dispatched to a music venue called Irving Plaza that caters to rock, alternative and punk. The venue, which had recently completed renovations, was also flagged in a number of recent missing persons that local investigation was getting some creepy vibes off of so, WAND.

It's early enough that the main act hasn't hit the stage yet. The opening band has a bluesy hard-rock sound with a frontman (well, woman) with long blonde hair.

The guitar starts up a new song. The drums join in, and then the singer lifts her head up and looks over the crowd with pale blue eyes.

"Been waitin' at these crossroards
Forever and a day
On a guy to buy my soul."

Despite the fact that WAND is struggling to contain an extra-dimensional invasion they do have to keep the spot fires from getting too out of control. After all it is no good preventing the planet from burning down if the places people have to live in have caught fire while you've been doing that. And while Pandora Peters makes an effort not to task out agents critical to the world saving efforts to things like this, sometimes things happen.

Which is why Koa and Keiko are here tonight. The broad, silver eyed agent steps in. He's not in uniform, nor is he in the usual 'government casual' collared shirts that he so often uses. No tonight he's in a 'Disturbed' T-Shirt and jeans. The coat he's wearing conceals the weapon he's got on him. It is cold after all. And in any case, this blends in better.

He's just stepping in from the cold when the opening band begins to play and his eyes cut up to the stage even as he holds the door open for his fellow agent to step in behind him.

Keiko had been planning on spending the evening with Elena. It was a good thing that she had back up for this type of thing. At least the child was used to Mama having to dash off at short notice. Maybe she'll be able to make it up to her later - Coney Island and icecream sounds wonderful. Yes, even in the middle of winter.

Following Koa in, Keiko slips off the jacket she's wearing. Underneath it's faded blue jeans and plain t-shirt. No band logos or clever motifs for the small peruvian, she wouldn't really know what they were. The fact that the t-shirt is royal purple is probably enough in the way of decoration for her.

There's no tattooes on her arms at the moment, the only markings that are visible are the black leather collar with silvery pink swirls through it that's as much part of her as anything and the top of the brand on her torso.

Stopping just inside the door, she's jostled by the person entering behind her who gets a glare from her through slitted eyes. The music has her looking, a frown creases her brow. Not saying anything yet, she looks at Koa.

To someone that sees auras all the time, the blonde on stage certainly isn't Illyana. There's not a lick about her that's magical or demonic, though she certainly shares a bit of the Queen of Limbo's sense of style with leather pants and ripped T-shirt.

The song is a take on the old story of the Crossroad Demon, the rest of the band echoing the line 'Sign with the Devil'. The song ends with the entreaty to 'Take me down' before the song ends with a flourish on the drums and the opening band starts to clear out and head backstage.

For those that can sense magic, there's the flicker of it in the rigging above the stage and a small demonic figure lurks amidst the shadows.

The similarity between the blonde and Illyana, visually, is striking. Or maybe it's just that she's a pale blonde with ice blue eyes. What is interesting though hasn't ever really come up is that Koa has never seen Illyana without an almost overpowering aura. To him, auras are as much a part of how someone looks as their hair color, their eyes or their sense of style. Keiko, in fact, has been looking different as she lost tattoos and even that gradual change has him occasionally failing to recognize who she is when she walks into a room.

But while Illyana is certainly a concern for both Agents, neither are looking for her here. After all, WAND's diviners would know if she were that close, wouldn't they?

It's the skittering of the demonic that gets his attention. Keiko will sense it much as he sees it, though the agent doesn't get a good look at it. "There!" He points, talking quietly to the peruvian woman. "This way. Try not to kill anyone with that death glare of yours." That's a joke. Bit of a joke.

Either way, Koa pushes past the people in the back and makes for the door on the side that leads backstage. The demon figure is moving a bit but even if it doesn't they'll still need to GET backstage to get to the upper areas.

He's already digging for his badge when someone - inevitably - stops him before he gets there or asks what he's doing back there.

"Be ready in case it runs, Keiko." The band and singer? Well that's the way they're going too isn't it? But Koa isn't thinking on that at the moment. There wasn't a lick of anything magical about any of them, and so they couldn't be responsible for the disappearances. Although…

"Interesting choice of song, wasn't it?" He says, mostly to the agent behind him but loud enough to be heard.

Keiko is still frowning, knocked again as someone bumps her. There's a low growl in her throat, her eyes flash yellow for a fraction of a second and her elbow rises just enough to jab the guy who did it.

"Is it her? My collar isn't reacting." she murmurs, eyes narrowing as the last remaining tattoo on her back starts to 'itch'. "Magic. Where?"

There's no comment on the music, whether it's good or not. It hasn't registered - it's *only* music to Keiko. Neither good or bad. The lyrics though, those she heard.

When Koa points, she's already moving, elbows out - she's not going to stepped on because they have to get through the place. "I'm always ready. Just remember, I don't have my spirits, hmmmm?" She says just as quietly. She looses sight of the demon as they move through the crowd. All she can see are backs and fronts for the moment.

"The singer was good. Pretty too. Just your type." She answers, equally as loudly.

The demonic figure slips through the rafters, heading deeper into the shadows. It's going to be a pain to get to if it doesn't come down.

Security begrudgingly lets the WAND agents through, chatter into their walkies make it clear Someone is going to come down to meet them and 'escort' them around (read as: be a pain in their ass) soonish.

The blonde singer can be seen off to the side, an easy smile on her face as she laughs with her bandmates as they pack up their gear. She doesn't give Koa or Keiko much attention, just two more faces in the ocean of people it takes to keep a show running.

Koa just gives Keiko a 'look' over his shoulder. "Yes, she was." Pretty? Or his type? He doesn't specify. Then they're through security and in the room that the bandmates are packing up their gear. The blonde registers as she laughs just because it's not something that he hears often. Not with the people he associates with at any rate. When was the last time Keiko laughed? He's not at all sure.

The 'escort' will be very inconvenient so it's probably best not to let one arrive before they act. Which means he has to be a bet… obvious.

"Alright everyone. Do not be alarmed but we have a smell pest control problem here." He says as he flashes his badge. "Just stand back we'll be out of your hair in a moment. Keiko, block the exit to the stage." The other doors are shut so… hopefully this works.

Koa uncoils a chain from around his waist which he hands to Keiko. "Take this. If the thing comes down here, try to tackle and wrap that chain around it."

He looks up, tracking the supernatural presence above him. The silver on his neck gleams. A few small roaches out back die and green motes hit Koa and then he LEAPS upward. Much further than a human should be able to.

Obvious? Yes. Yes it is. Also if he misses he's probably going to drop back down almost among the band members. Or, you know. If one of the rafters breaks.

The last time Koa heard Keiko laugh, was when the demon spirit was on her and she was hacking up a body. So that probably doesn't count.

Up in the rafters isn't really a problem for Keiko. Not anymore. It will be cramped and it means letting the demon spirit out for a bit, which … isn't good really, but she can do it. Though maybe they won't have to.

"Pity I didn't bring Elena along…" she mutters. It's no guarantee but Elena has more command over Limbo demons than Keiko does, which wouldn't be hard given Keiko has none.

"Do you think the demon is responsible for the disappearances? It's not like Limbo demons to do that - unless it's me." It doesn't mean they *won't*, but they would likely be under orders and if they are, then that's even more problematic. "Or is just here because we are?" Keiko's eyes move to the blonde again, the frown getting deeper. It can't be Illyana, even if the resemblance is uncanny, Keiko doesn't feel the need to bend the knee.

Taking the chain, the small woman moves to the door and blocks it, giving Koa a patented flat look. "Did you think to try ice cream to entice it down?" She's being deadly serious, watching as her partner makes the leap to the rafters. This will probably end badly for at least one of them.

As Koa calls for everyone's attention, the blonde singer turns with everyone else, looking confused and concerned. She exchanges looks with the other people in the bad, brushing her blonde hair back. To someone that isn't usually blinded by Illyana's aura, the resemblance is… uncanny.

Luckily for Koa, when he leaps up the rafter holds. It's a maze of rigging and supports up here, which complicates things as the demon slithers through them like a spider on its web. The WAND agent's sudden appearance up here does get its attention, and it turns its head over towards him and *hisses*.

The demon is half the height of a human, and could pass as one in the shadows. Until you saw the fangs and claws. And those glowing yellow eyes.

"Not everything in the universe responds well to ice cream. This is especially true of…" Grunt. "Think in other dimensions." Keiko may find that a bit impossible but there you have it. As to the other questions she has? "No idea. Maybe we can ask it…"

That uncanny resemblence is indeed probably why Keiko called out 'just your type' to Koa. Who literally couldn't see the forest for the trees in that case and in any event has other things to focus on right this second. He grabs at the demon, misses and then pulls himself up onto the webbing. Lithe Koa is not. Agile, well…

It's the hiss that's the trouble. Koa's eyes go full silver and from the ground everyone can see the outline of the shark-beast that represents his inner predator. Only Keiko will know what that means though, or… well. Koa assumes that to be the case. The beast makes a grab at the demon whilst simultaneously sweeping claws through the wood and webbing. Which will very likely have the effect of sending everything crashing to the ground.

Which was NOT the plan.

Keiko hasn't seen Koa's beast get the better of him in quite some time.

As he's squirming a pendulum slips out of his pocket and thunks to the the floor in front of the singer, where it starts to pulse and gleam.

"Limbo demons do…" Keiko says simply, convinced that the one in rafters is a Limbo demon. "And it's easier to try than …." She actually winces when Koa's predator appears. For the moment she doesn't move to help him - she'd only make things worse. "Focus Koa. You can do this …" Chitinous black scales slowly creep up her back and over her shoulders - unwittingly, she's getting ready to pounce herself.

Then the pendulum drops - which has moving towards the singer. Carefully.

Seeing Koa leap got murmurs and attention. The flash of the glowing beast gets a few squeaks but it's the detritus falling to the floor that gets shouts and has people start to run so they can get out of the way.

Wood and wire and ropes and lights come crashing down. Someone ends up pushing the blond singer, sending her sprawling as the pendulum falls just before her. She looks at it for a long moment, and then glances up at Keiko as the short woman approaches. The blonde reaches out to pick it up so she can offer it to the Peruvian as she gets back up to her feet.

The demon that Koa's perusing doesn't seem real keen on engaging, dodging away as the WAND agent swipes at him. When that pendulum falls, the demon's glowing yellow eyes follow it and, with a look to Koa, it dives down towards the stage.

Shouts turn to screams at the demon's sudden appearance. It's landed behind the singer, putting the blonde between it and Keiko.

"Ow." Koa groans, winded when he lands amid cut webbing and bits of timber. He is going to be slow to pick himself up. "New plan. Keiko. Get him."

The pendulum reacts… oddly to being touched by both women. Possibly it reacts this way to everyone, it's not like Koa hands it out to people or commonly drops it. But there's a sense of a heartbeat when it is touched. A slow, steady, very powerful heartbeat.

There's a hissed curse in demonic. Not a language Koa speaks with any kind of fluency but… well… curses are easy to pick up. The beast is in full display as Koa comes to his feet, not separated from the agent but surrounding him. It looks toward where the demon landed. Which means it winds up looking right at Keiko and the Singer.

It doesn't really take much for Keiko's demon spirits to make an appearance these days. With the others spirits gone, it seems stronger. With the demon landing behind the blonde, yellow eyes glowing and fangs bared, it's met by similar visage.

Keiko hisses a response in the same language to the demon, the wings that have appeared on her back lifting her over the blonde. The chain held in her hand, Keiko lurches towards the creature to tackle it, hissing and growling as she does.

Koa had said to get him, hadn't he?

The blonde's eyes go very wide as Koa crashes down and then Keiko leaps for her. Well. It looks like Keiko's leaping for her. Hand closing tight around the pendulum, the blonde dives off to the side as Keiko goes up high. A tuck and roll and the blonde lands in a crouch, blue eyes still wide with surprise as all hell seems to break around her.

Blonde hair flares to the side as the singer looks about for a way out, the pulsing pendulum all but forgotten in her hand as she tries to get the hell out of the area.

The demon skitters away as Keiko leaps for it, grabbing one of the fleeing humans and dragging it over to use as a shield against any attacks.

That's a Limbo demon, alright. "« I kill! »" It warns, one clawed hand wrapped around the human's throat.

The urge is to rush the demon and put it down. Koa has to reign in that urge. He's too far for a rush to be safe. Keiko is much closer and if a physical intervention is needed it will be all on her. Instead he holds out a hand to the blonde.

"Miss! That pendulum your holding!" He's gesturing for her to toss it to him, or hand it to him, rather than bolt with it. He can ward the demon into submission if he's quick though Keiko will probably very much not appreciate that.

"Keep it talking Keiko. It's definitely from Limbo. It should recognize you." Hopefully being recognized is not a bad thing.

That pendulum is still 'pulsing' with a heartbeat in the blonde singer's hand and she might notice the way that he double-takes at her for a moment. The way the hair flares out is… a little bit uncanny.

"Do not move…" Keiko growls low to the blonde. "Pass the pendulum … carefully." She's not completely gone. Koa's instructions get a slightly louder growl "Don't you tell me what to do …" she *has* to do that, Koa knows that. She's not paying attention to the other Agent any longer though.

"If you kill my human, I will kill you. You know who I am and what I can do. I best G'rfn and the others …"

Slowly, Keiko circles … trying to turn the demon so it's exposed to Koa. Oh yes, she's intuited what he wants to do.

The demon hisses at Keiko. "« Not your human! »" It gives the human a bit of a shake, which wouldn't be possible given its short stature if the demon didn't have such long limbs and more-than-human strength.

The blonde hesitates a moment as Koa, with his glowing Beast, speaks to her. She looks down, as though just now remembering she had it. Hastily, she throws it his way and then makes a break for the closest exit.

As the blonde runs off, the demon's glowing gaze shifts off, watching her and giving Keiko an opening.

Koa can't and doesn't focus on the blonde at the moment. There's lives at stake. He catches the pendulum and pulls his beast in - violently - as he starts to draw a warding. In an unwelcome surprise as it gets closer to completion he starts to feel a tingle and burn on his skin.

"Great." He mutters, eyeing Keiko as she sasses him.

She likely already knows this is going to hurt so he doesn't warn her. He just waits for her to make her move into that opening and when she does he pushes power into the ward spell, yanking the magic from the closest thing he can find to power it.

"Totally my human and I'm prepared to prove. Are you?" Keiko growls, yellow eyes glowing intensely. "I said don't move…"

In another frame of mind, the small peruvian wouldn't blame the blonde but with the demon spirit riding her, compassion is in short supply.

The demon looks away and Keiko leaps. Tearing the human away from the demon and pushing them hard. She's got no extra strength in this form, but she is fit - so there's a bit of force to it. Wrapping her wings about the other demon, she tries to hold it - just as the ward completes.

Keiko-demon doesn't cry out as her flesh steams a little but oh Darkchilde. That hurts.

The human is ripped away, and the demon howls in pain and outrage as Keiko tackles it and the Ward snaps closed about it. The small figure folds up into a tight, angry ball as it tries to avoid the edges of the Ward, glaring at Keiko.

The room's emptied now, the place a wreck of fallen debris and knocked over equipment from the mass exodus.

Of the blonde singer? There is no sign.

Koa picks up his chain now from where it had fallen and whips it out. It wraps around the demon and runes hidden along it's surface begin to burn.

"Alright Keiko, I've got it now." The WAND agent says in a rough but measured tone. "You and me are going to have a little talk. Later. At my place."

That's to the demon, naturally. The sigils flare and the demon is sucked into the chain.

"Good work Keiko." Not 'are you okay'. Not in her present state. He starts to wind up his chain and then something gets his attention on his hand. There's something on his pendulum. A silvery metal. It looks like… liquid promethium. He just stares at it for a moment and then he looks up at Keiko, and then out the door where the blonde singer probably went.

"Fuck." He growls. "Keiko. Pull it in. We to talk to the building manager and find out who that was." Because they're going to need to track her down.

It all happens very quickly. Keiko releases the demon just as Koa's chain whips out. She's growling and snarling though, being aggressive. That could well be because the ward damn hurts.

There's no response to the praise, Keiko-demon is looking at the door and the floor. "We need Conner out of storage …" Of course they had to take her tattooes off. They could be tracking the blonde right now.

As to pulling it in? She just snarls and simmers there. It will take a moment.

"We'll get him. Come on!" Because there aren't very many reasons that his Pendulum should be doing that. And there's only one person he knows who is in any way connected enough to that metal to make sense. Even if this is false trail it might still be very important.

And like that Koa moves off, brushing past still stunned people to find security and get management down here now.

It's going to be a long night for the agents.

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