2020-03-21 - Chalk Hunt


(Warning, dark scene is dark!) Chalk has some information and Domino's willing to dig for it while Hunter and Whiplash lurk nearby.

Log Info:

Storyteller: hank-mccoy
Date: Sat Mar 21 21:49:51 2020
Location: Mutant Town

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Man that Chalk guy is a slippery sonuva…it is really impressive that a guy, an /albino/, one with pink eyes even, can disappear so completely. He has no phones registered in his name, very little digital footprint. He DOES have a message board he logs into on the DarkWeb - Tabula Rasa, the Blank Slate - a Chalk board, as it were.

He's a fixer-facilitator-information broker, not a comedian, obviously.

It took a while to track him down, but Domino did it by means of stubborn, snark, bribes, and at the end…old fashioned good luck.

Mutant Town.

He's hiding out, or maybe working, the fringes of mutant town.


There's a stranger in her protecterate, or just outside the formal bounds, a pale man. He doesn't talk much, mostly he seems to just buy food and supplies, always paying well, always in cash, small bills, non-sequentially numbered bills at that. Still, he does /not/ speak with a Russian accent at least, that's something. Still, he'd get on Hunter's radar, he's an anomaly, and those are seldom good.


The man is currently in the process of completing a trade, simple stuff, he just wants a sandwich. He's dressed in blue jeans and flannel, and Colorados boots. NOT his usual look, and the shades and Yankees cap, yeah, not really a great look for him, but…it is a better fit here than his usual Ricky Martin style suits!


Those who enter the protectorate of Mutant Town —

Wait, wait, wait! Is that really what this place is called? Is that the label on the map? Well, let's just say that the notes have been sent in to Rand-McNally and are under consideration.

Ahem. So, as we were saying: those who enter the protectorate of Mutant Town are noticed. They are not hunted. They are not harmed. They are not threatened. But they are noticed. They only have problems if they prove themselve a threat to the people of Mutant Town.

When that happens, Hunter happens.

But for now, there is no known threat. Cash is fine. Buying is fine. Keeping to oneself is fine. Being an albino is just fine. Everything is fine.

Until it is not.

But the moment Domino comes wandering into Mutant Town? That itch starts at the back of her head, just below the base of her skull. That itch that says 'frakk, someone dangerous is watching me.' And Domino is not stupid. She knows who the Protector of Mutant Town is. And what she can do.


Normally, it would be enough of a ripple just having new people in Mutant Town. But people come, and go. New York draws the hopeful, the ambitious, the desperate, and more so mutants than others at times. After all, there are only so many places you can go when you're powered and can't hide it without standing out.

But there's a little ripple of attention, always. And occasionally, one of those people who enters who has been singled out to be watched for.

Like a certain spotted woman who is 'spotted' and reported via a small burner phone by one of the ubiquitous homeless in the area.

Which is why part of that sensation of being watched comes from the stealthy figure paralleling the course of the newer intruders along the rooftops, leaping effortlessly and quietly between buildings with an inhuman grace as the mauve young woman follows. Wondering why these particular visitors are here.


It's often the case that the more familiar turns out being the more dangerous. Domino's met with the Hunter. Even befriended the other feline-inclined creature. And yet… She's hunted these grounds before. The hellcat had fed from errant mutants of this neighborhood. One here, one there… No pattern. Very much below the radar.

Neena's aware of these past transgressions. She knows that setting foot anywhere near Metahuman Central is going to make her skin crawl, put her on edge, have her itching to sink her teeth into someone's throat and devour their peculiarly flavored soul—

This isn't why she's here tonight. This is a job, a -different- kind of hunt. She has to stay focused, even if that means deliberately injuring herself further through one of the express routes created by the Nova Hounds.

If all goes according to plan then no bloodshed will be necessary at all. No harm need be caused.

These decisions will be entirely up to Chalk.

With eyes on the other albino Neena lies in wait nearby. A parked vehicle serves as comfortable cover. That the vehicle happens to be -Chalk's- isn't yet known but it'll certainly speed up her 'catch' when her prey winds up walking right on over before conveniently stuffing himself inside of a cramped metal box.


Unaware of the fact that he's being tracked by not one, not even by two, but by /three/ interested parties is not something that would make Chalk all that comfortable. Eyes of pink study the crab chitined young…woman? Yes, the voice is definitely feminine, as she trades for that sandwich, actually, Shell makes REALLY good sandwiches, especially the pastrami on 'Polski Chleb', a Polish sourdough-rye and garnished with thousand island dressing with a dollop of horseradish as well as melted swiss.

Dom will likely be VERY amused when she realizes she's in the back seat of /his/ car, after all, who would expect Chalk to be driving a beat up AMC pacer? At least it is the four door model, even if the paint on the doors all fail to match the ugly puce of the car itself.

Settling behind the wheel, he sets his sandwich, and man that smells /good/, on the seat next to him, and opens a Dr. Pepper to go with it. Before he actually /eats/ however, he takes out a notebook and writes something down, and then tucks it away.

"God this job sucks." He mutters.


So, the Domino is hunting in her preserve? Hunter does not take action, but she watches intently. She is ready. And that scope of hers allows her to read that notebook better than anyone else but the one writing it or the woman hidden in his back seat. And she has a better angle. If she knew what to make of those notes, she might act. But she does not.


Lexi…does not have a good view on what's being looked at. Superhuman vision are not one of her gifts, but really good hearing is as she crouches down, her pointed ears perking forwards slightly , crouching down on the rooftop as she tilts her head, watching the car. Hmm. So, stranger brings another stranger looking for him….explains why he's hiding. But who's hunting him? Unlike Hunter, Lexi hasn't met Domino yet, but she's…distinctive, from what she's gotten a look. Maybe they're related, considering the two strangers' similar looks, but she doubts it.

For now, she's content to just observe and wait to see what happens next.


"Couldn't agree more" Domino speaks from the back seat of that POS Pacer. "And yet I have no choice but to track down your slimy ass because there's a couple of missing pages from this week's book club assignment."

She doesn't reach for a weapon. Frankly she's hoping that it won't be necessary. If Chalk knows even a -little- about her then he'd know that she doesn't need a weapon. If he tried to bolt for it he'd likely get tangled up in his own seatbelt and sprain his ankle while falling out of the car.

Still, if he leaves her no choice she's not afraid to make this a physical confrontation.

"Y'see..there was a notable absence in the details of that 'hound' slip you passed my way. Actually..there were THREE notable absences which all led to a whole collection of fresh scars."

Hematite-glassed eyes grow slightly wider as she stares at the other albino through the rearview mirror. "This is where you tell me who was offering the contract."

Why does it always feel like there's a set of crosshairs on her whenever she's in this part of town..?


Chalk goes very very still, sandwich half half raised. A moment to compose himself, and then the albino lowers the sandwich to the paper it was wrapped in and puts both of his hands on the steering wheel. See? He wants to play nice! No weapons in hand and everything.

Pink eyes look into the mirror, a bit of sweat trickling down his brow, but eyes level enough as he stares into cat-slitted hematite.

"Three? Really? They only recovered two…neither of them the one they wanted." He offers an ingratiating smile, he's actually VERY good at that.

"Still, they agreed to full payment of the contract, plus fifty percent boost for the double kills. Since we know you're alive, I'll have the funds wired to your offshore account as agreed."

And then his expression goes flat. "Nope. This is not that point, if I tell you - no matter /what/ you do now—-if they find out I spilled, they'll do /far/ worse."

His sweat is thick with fear, but his gaze is pretty well set.


Chalk has been an on-again, off again visitor to Mutant Town for months now, but…it isn't very common, and he has not caused any over trouble, just seems to come here periodically to hide and always in a different part of town.


That stink of fear convinces Hunter that something is amiss. This frequent visitor is not afraid of Domino; not really. His fear is for his employers, whomever they might be and whatever their intentions. And that makes up her mind, as the she prepares to aim instead for the engine of that car, should he attempt to leave that way. What is he up to? What are his masters up to?


Hmm hmm. No shooting yet. Or knifing. Or biting. (sometimes there's biting in Mutant Town) Doesn't mean there won't be one, but, harder to hear what's going on from where she is.

With a swirl, tendrils sprout from her lower back as she spiders gracefully over the side of the building, quietly moving down the wall to drop down behind the dumpster nearby, where she can hear better what's going on. And now she can smell the fear….


Neena doesn't mention that there's at least one more hound still on the loose. Someone like Chalk, and whomever he's working for, -do not- need to have that intel.

"They're doing recovery ops? Curioser and curioser. And that was -three- kills. Not two. One of them easily being twice as large."

Then her head dips forward with a faint sigh, gently bobbing once or twice.


If Lexi is looking for a knife she's about to find one! In a split second Domino's got a karambit in one hand and half of Chalk's head in the other, pinning him back against the headrest with the wicked claw-shaped blade neatly curled up right against a full quarter of the man's neck. A good pull would easily sever both his throat and arteries..and the only way he's getting out of his own car is to go straight through it.

"-They- aren't here. -I- am. Keep holding out on me and they'll be -lucky- to find any pieces of you big enough to punish."


Hunter just watches. She does not pull the trigger. She does not intervene. But she is getting even more interested, now.


Unless of course they already know about the fourth hound…or worse…didn't know there were two adults, a breeding pair.

"Proof. Proof of the kill and you'll get two and a half times…" He ponders. "…actually, three times the agreed amount."

He starts to relax a bit at that calm 'Okay.', of course that goes right out the window when he's got razored steel at his throat, a hand over his brow holding him immobile. The stink of fear is now much much more intense.

Which makes the laugh that follows all the more surprising. "Do it then. You get /nothing/ from me, and I get a FUCKTON cleaner death than they'd give me. Do it, Spot…"

DAMN, he's either braver than he looks or these people are /really/ damn scary!


Yup, therrrres the knife.

Lexi frowns thoughfully to herself. From the sound of it, this is a purely business "discussions" taking place. She doesn't really have any skin in the game, so to speak. I mean, unless a body needs to sort of vanish, which might be heading that way. She's kinda rooting for Spot though, she's got gumption! And she's cute, and perhaps Lexi is a leeeetle bit shallow in first impressions at times.


Well. Dom is learning some bits and pieces here but nowhere near enough..and Chalk's looking to play some hardball.

This is what the Project had made her for. This is what she's designed to do. Yet there's always the morality element, one of those remaining slivers of humanity which they could never fully tear away from her. -Could- she go through with this?

Could she allow Kelli to have lost her family and her very arm for -nothing?-

Fortune favors Neena tonight. There is no one from RESCUE here to see this.

"What makes you think I'm going make this any easier for you?" Domino says in a low, menacing tone which edges uncomfortably close to a purr.

The Project had indeed taught her well. She knows what locations of a human body lead to the most discomfort. There won't be any disfigurement, nothing larger than a surgical quarter inch scar. Chalk won't have to bleed for her..much. Though he'll never be able to look at her the same way again.

"Innocent people are dying out there," she'll calmly explain while letting the knife push the subject home. "A little girl lost her parents..her arm..her future..because of these creatures. How much of that blood do you want on your hands?"

For her this is just another part of the job. It's not something to look forward to or get off on.

Unfortunately, the hellcat doesn't play by the same rules.


Chalk is not the bravest of men, nope, that's why he's a broker type not a field type, but that does not mean he's a coward. He actually holds out for a surprisingly long while, the scent of blood, and fear, and pain thick thick thick in the car, and something both Lexi and Diya cannot possibly miss.

But he is, at the end, a survivor. He is also just a man.

"Dunno…who hired me, not directly. Can…can point you to a…kennel…training facility." He gasps out, bleeding. "What you find there…that's…that's not on /me/, deal? Only way I survive this…" He mutters. "…not that you care, but I fucking do!"

Tears of pain run down his cheeks, but his gaze is still /direct/. That's the deal, take it or leave it.


Hunter should stop this. Torture is not something she condones. Not from anyone. Not for any reason. But Domino's words strike a cord with her. A child lost her family because of those this man is working for. A child was maimed. And this man … this man needs to talk.

And he does. And Hunter hears every word. Smells the truth, and the stink of his fear and the stench of his urge to live through that fear.

A tiny flash of light, a sliver of a beam strikes in front of Lexi on the stone, and is then gone. It is the only clue Hunter gives as she evaporates into the night, and goes sprinting.


Find the kennel. Find justice. Someone is sending creatures to kill families. The Protector of Mutant Town will not tolerate that.


Mmmm….so Spot lady is also pretty hard core. And this is about…a kid? And kennels. Her eyes narrow.

So help her if this is another bullshit mutant slaving ring, she's gonna be really, REALLY put out with someone. She thought Hottie stopped that shit the last time someone got the bright idea to kidnap anyone in Mutant Town.

But kennel and training? That sounds more like someone trying to…hell, she doesn't know. Could be someone trying to make mutant killers again, could be animals. Could be dog fighting.

Fuck, that would almost be NORMAL, if it was only dogfighting.

Lexi creeps closers, then halts at the flash of light as she tilts her head up, scanning around. So Hottie is here. So she knows. Well. That's a good start.


To be at war with yourself. If this were a turning point in the life of Neena Thurman she would have missed the opportunity. A new life, people who care about her, striving to make the right choices… Instead she returns to the pit which had forged her.

Though it does get results.

The moment also causes a spike of stress within the mercenary and there is a felt relief when Chalk's defenses break and she can cease making his torment any worse. The line between soldier and monster is all too thin and she's toed this edge far too often.

The blade is soon replaced by an empty hand resting upon the back of the man's shoulder. This isn't personal. This is a job. He chose to take the difficult route. She may well have done the same.

Again her words are spoken gently. This time they lack the menacing edge and instead are left to push beyond a growing feeling within the pit of her stomach. "Thank you."

But there's one more thing.

The blade goes back into hiding before she leans forward, arms folding across the edge of each seatback like everything in the world is perfectly normal.

"I'd take no pleasure in your death, Chalk, so I'm going to give you an opportunity here. In exchange for my silence of your involvement here..you can do a little something for me."

"Tell me where I can find Charlie O'Mele."


Diya's search will find no signs of these things hunting the core of her demesne, but there are some signs of some in the outlying areas, specifically where it borders some of the worst parts of the disaster zone. The trail is really old, and leads into some tunnels underground with sufficient rank to make it a difficult track. For now.

Even so, the Hunter is not one to give up, she'd eventually find the Kennel, deep underground and sufficiently well defended that she probably wouldn't charge right in. Still, even from the periphery she can smell about /twelve/ 'dog like' scents, many of thing intertwined with machine smells. Either the place is really high tech, or they're cyborgs, or…more terrifying, both.

Not that Diya scares easily!

Panting to get his breathing under control, he looks for permission, and then Chalk picks up his notebook, taking it out of his pocket. The dude is SUPER organized, it seems. But…info brokering IS one of his mainstays. He opens the book, thumbing through it until he finds a note. "The Kennel…it…is dangerous. Be careful, out there." He takes the smaller book he wrote in that Diya saw, and flips through the pages to find a blank - on it he scrawls geo-coordinates for the Kennel, and tears the page out for Domino.

He tries to quip, still throbbing with the dagger cut. And then he blinks at the price for her silence. "Doctor Charlize O'Mele? I…dunno." And then Hastily. "I can have info in less than a day, I'll text your burner..yes?"


Given the certainty of fear in the information broker about his clients, the Hunter did not come lightly. She planned for the worst, at least to the best of her considerable ability. And now that she has found the target, she hunkers down and waits. She feels reasonably sure that Domino will be by soon. She feels almost as sure that Lexi will come as well.

That last does not please her. She has no desire for Lexi to be in the middle of all of what is going to transpire here. But as much as Diya would prefer to protect and shelter Lexi, she has had to accept that she cannot.

But while the Hunter waits, she prepares her gear. Grenades. Additional firearms. Knives. Explosive charges. It would be ideal if she needs none of this. But she is a soldier. She prepares for every eventuality she can, and then deals with what comes.


Hmm hmm. Innnnnteresting. Really, it should be Diya with the problem with curiosity, but Lexi is more guilty of it generally. She's not sure what's going on, but she's certainly interested in the answer to the question now! Compelling TV. Or whatever you call it. She slips up so she's just behind the car now, moving in a careful spidering crawl forward to rest there, waiting now in a crouch.


Chalk isn't kept from reaching for his notes. When the torn page is offered Domino takes it with a quick glance over before tucking it into a pocket. Excellent, some actual -hard data- she can work with. The guy's even telling her to be careful out there -after she interrogated him- for the intel. No hard feelings, right?

Or maybe it's a disclaimer so she doesn't get hacked up even more then decide to take it out on the other poor albino.

"That's the one" she flatly confirms before Chalk quickly amends his question with an offer. Dom actually smiles slightly. "I'll be waiting for it. Enjoy your dinner" she offers while patting both of his shoulders. "Hey..did you pick that up from her?" she asks while thumbing over to 'Shell.' "It smells fantastic."

Hopping out of the cobbled together Pacer frees Neena up to walk over to where the expert sandwich maker lurks so she can order up one of her own. There's nothing quite like a good meal while planning what kind of ordnance to gather together for the next strike.


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