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  1. [22:06] <[Amon]> "I wonder how much control he can exert from beyond the grave?"
  2. [22:06] <Perez> "The sun your enemy? Vampires?"
  3. [22:06] <@Ettin> >> Hot Cauldron sits in a decent but small street in a magic part of the cit, sandwiched between one of Wisconsin's alchemy stores and a road with a billboard advertisement for one of those new advanced metal bomb shelters looming over it; the actual building is dark and mysterious, but in a mostly calculated way with curtains over the windows and everything. The sign over the front is very
  4. [22:06] <@Ettin> fancy, with the place's name spelled out by what looks like noodles flying out of a tilting cauldron full of stew.
  5. [22:06] * Striker ( has joined #rpg5
  6. [22:06] * ChanServ sets mode: +o Striker
  7. [22:06] * @Strike[out] ( Quit (Ping timeout: 256 seconds)
  8. [22:07] <Blake> "I think I'm going to be sick."
  9. [22:09] <[Amon]> "Like your little vampires, yes." Amon hops out of his mech and locks it!
  10. [22:09] <Perez> "Are they selling magic or ramen?" Perez parks and gets out, opening the other doors with the new automatic door opener he had installed. "Nice neighborhood."
  11. [22:09] <@Ettin> >> When you peek in, the inside is pretty standard for this kind of thing; cheap ritual components and kitschy magical bullshit near the front, where curious civilians can shop around and buy ~wizard gear~ to look cool without actually dabbling in any magic, and a set of stairs near the back leading up to the REAL magic stuff that probably needs licenses and gets tracked. Some of the less
  12. [22:09] <@Ettin> dangerous real magic stuff sits on display on a nearby tier to hook the attention of real wizards.
  13. [22:10] * [Amon] browses!
  14. [22:10] <@Ettin> >> You are almost immediately approached by one of the staff! Blake is probably annoyed.
  15. [22:13] <@Ettin> >> The girl is probably Japanese, though she is making it a little confusing by wearing a black Chinese dress with slightly-less-black occult symbols decorating it; it is probably a staff thing, because a) it is clearly designed to look occult and exotic on purpose to draw attention to the store's occult thing and b) she also has a name tag that says "HELLO MY NAME IS [ Mitsuko ]".
  16. [22:14] <@Ettin> >> "Hello! Can I help you?" She beams!
  17. [22:14] <Perez> "Hi, Mitsuko," Perez nods to her in greeting. "I'm looking to buy some occult gear so I can look like a masters in Occult Studies. What would you recommend?"
  18. [22:16] <@Ettin> >> Mitsuko doesn't miss a beat! Her long dark hair swishes around and she heads for the occult garb. "Ah, for Hallow's Eve? We put out some extra clothes for just this occasion..."
  19. [22:18] * Perez falls in step behind her for a few paces, then veers toward the stairs. "How about something from the back? Maybe I can hand out bits of Glaaki as party favors."
  20. [22:18] * Blake mimes her behind her back, All Hallows Eve blah blah blah. She quickly stops before Mitsuko turns around though.
  21. [22:19] <@Ettin> >> She turns back around and brushes her hair away from her earring idly. "Oh, you're after that sort of thing?"
  22. [22:20] <@Ettin> >> Mitsuko is tall and thin, maybe Blake is jealous.
  23. [22:22] * Perez gives her a second look and adjusts his coat slightly. "I'm after someone who was," he admits, and produces a pad, setting it to Solomon the younger and the elder's images again. "Recognize either of these people?"
  24. [22:23] <@Ettin> >> She taps her chin and thinks! "Mmm... one of them, yes. Are they brothers? They're very similar."
  25. [22:24] <@Ettin> >> Her smile is fading, probably because she doesn't have to try so hard to make a sale now. "Upstairs, probably."
  26. [22:24] <@Ettin> >> "This way." Off she goes!
  27. [22:24] <Perez> "Nice eyes," he nods, and sets off after her.
  28. [22:24] * [Amon] skitters after her.
  29. [22:24] <@Ettin> >> "Thanks!" She probably misinterpreted that.
  30. [22:24] <@Ettin> >> Upstairs! :O
  31. [22:25] * Blake follows. "Maybe they'll even have something interesting up there."
  32. [22:26] <@Ettin> >> The REAL MAGIC section is actually well stocked, though it runs more towards ritual components than anything else and cool wizard clothes should probably stay downstairs. There's obviously a section of collector's items at the back, though, in their own special area with glass cases and dramatic curtains; some of them might be models of real things they keep elsewhere where they can't be
  33. [22:26] <@Ettin> stolen. They carry hefty price tags!
  34. [22:27] <@Ettin> >> The usual signs litter the area - "Purchases Are Monitored" and other cute little things that don't outright say "make too big or too weird a purchase and the OOI will flag you for a checkup".
  35. [22:27] <@Ettin> >> Also "Totally not responsible if you blow yourself up!" in nicer words, that sort of thing.
  36. [22:28] * Blake picks through stuff. "Not bad for mass market, I guess."
  37. [22:28] * Perez checks out the price tag, whistling if a lot of them are in the same price range as Jack's purchase.
  38. [22:28] <@Ettin> >> Mitsuko is approached by the upstairs manager! She is almost a double of Mitsuko, except very slightly taller and wearing a white dress instead.
  39. [22:29] <@Ettin> >> "Suki, we're out of -- oh!" Smile! "Hello."
  40. [22:29] <@Ettin> >> "Not a purchase," Mitsuko puts a hand on her hip and gestures to the others! "They're looking for someone."
  41. [22:29] <Perez> "Hi," Perez smiles, too, for less sales related reasons. "Are you sisters? You look similar."
  42. [22:30] <@Ettin> >> Yukako (nametags!) doesn't stop smiling! "Yes. She's Suki, I'm Yaki."
  43. [22:30] <[Amon]> "...Cute."
  44. [22:32] <@Ettin> >> "Can you show her the picture?" Suki gestures!
  45. [22:32] * Blake continues to be a jerk while the two aren't looking, with eyerolls and so forth.
  46. [22:33] <Perez> "Yeah," Perez nods, producing the tablet again. "Either of these two."
  47. [22:33] <Perez> "Seems like your type, too, Sigimund," he adds.
  48. [22:33] <@Ettin> >> Yaki brushes hair away from her other ear. "Aha, I do!"
  49. [22:35] <Perez> "Yeah?" Perez cocks an eyebrow.
  50. [22:35] <@Ettin> >> "Yes, he was here a few days ago. Might I ask what your interest is?"
  51. [22:36] <Perez> "Someone killed him, turned him into a zombie with the merchandise, then lopped off his head and made off with it, maybe not in that particular order."
  52. [22:36] <[Amon]> Amon coughs politely, and subtly makes... some manner of gang sign at Yaki? Weird.
  53. [22:37] <@Ettin> >> That throws them off!
  54. [22:37] <@Ettin> >> "Wait, what the f-" Suki recovers. "Ah, an investigation, then."
  55. [22:38] <[Amon]> "Yes, we're private detectives investigating a pseudohomicide."
  56. [22:38] <@Ettin> >> Yaki nods and gestures to an office door! "Well, then. This way, please."
  57. [22:38] <Perez> "Thanks." Perez goes that way.
  58. [22:38] <Blake> "Wha?"
  59. [22:38] * [Amon] bobs his beak up and down, and follows!
  60. [22:41] <@Ettin> >> Suki stays outside to manage the store unless she's asked to join them! Yaki takes you into a plain office with some decent chairs, sits behind a desk with her legs crossed daintily and pulls up a holo-screen.
  61. [22:41] * [Amon] sits in a decent chair!
  62. [22:42] * Perez takes a seat, too. Excuses for asking Saki to join them so Blake and Norman can look the place are thin.
  63. [22:43] <@Ettin> >> She pulls up the details! "Are you aware of his purchase?"
  64. [22:44] * Thursday ( Quit (Quit: <doc> To hate the Lyrai is to hate oneself. | <Aoko> QUACK.)
  65. [22:45] <Perez> "We have his record of it." Perez makes sure they match. "What was it?"
  66. [22:45] * Thursday ( has joined #rpg5
  67. [22:47] <@Ettin> >> They do! Yaki proceeds to explain it in detail while sounding only slightly bored. "One copy of the first volume of the Revelations of Glaaki, written in 2050 by a mad survivor - actually, it's a copy of a censored version of the text with his comments written in the margins, but quite useful to an occult historian. Plus the tip of one of Glaaki's spines. More a collector's item, really."
  68. [22:48] <Perez> "Would that be enough to reanimate someone?"
  69. [22:48] <@Ettin> >> "The book was a mere two thousand dollars. The tip is sixty-five, but the book comes free if you buy it. At first he was only interested in the book..."
  70. [22:49] <@Ettin> >> "I doubt it, but it was still very dangerous. His license seemed legitimate."
  71. [22:50] <Perez> "Seems like it did the trick, though. Pretty odd stuff for a cook. You must have done a good job upselling it."
  72. [22:50] <[Amon]> "Did he give any indication of why he was purchasing them?"
  73. [22:51] <@Ettin> >> Yaki bites her lip! "..."
  74. [22:51] * Strike[out] ( has joined #rpg5
  75. [22:51] * ChanServ sets mode: +o Strike[out]
  76. [22:51] * @Striker ( Quit (Ping timeout: 256 seconds)
  77. [22:56] <Perez> "What'd he say?"
  78. [22:57] <Blake> "Don't act like you don't know."
  79. [22:57] <@Ettin> >> Yaki flinches very slightly and clears her throat! "Sorry. Well."
  80. [22:58] * [Amon] tilts his head!
  81. [22:58] <@Ettin> >> "He didn't seem like he had a very good reason, to be honest."
  82. [22:59] <Perez> "Alright, but what's the reason he had?"
  83. [22:59] <@Ettin> >> "He was interested in the book only at first, but when he saw the price tag for the spine he said it must be important?" She looks confused! "Apparently he had very recently come into almost exactly sixty-five thousand dollars and decided that it must be a sign."
  84. [23:00] <[Amon]> "..."
  85. [23:00] <@Ettin> >> "He wouldn't explain much. I'd have assumed he was buying on behalf of someone who preferred to keep their head down, but he didn't seem to know what he was looking for until he saw it."
  86. [23:01] <Perez> "That's interesting." Perez nods. "And maybe he was. Would anyone else in the store have overheard him buying it?"
  87. [23:03] <@Ettin> >> Yaki bites her lip and brushes hair away from her ear again!
  88. [23:04] * Perez leans back in his char and frowns toward her. "What aren't you saying now?"
  89. [23:08] * Blake puts her hand on Yaki's desk and leans over. "Quit playing coy. We're not a bunch of half-trained wage-mages and occult fanboys like your usual customer base. You really don't want to be jerking us around."
  90. [23:09] <[Amon]> "I believe I mentioned earlier," Amon notes airily. "We're private detectives, not policemen. We're only investigating this specific case. Anything else is not going to be reported."
  91. [23:09] <@Ettin> >> Yaki leans back!
  92. [23:09] <@Ettin> >> "Ah..." she blinks and tries to calm Blake down! "I'm sorry, it's complicated."
  93. [23:10] <[Amon]> "The kind of complicated that occasionally involves a fellow nicknamed Mr. Wizard?"
  94. [23:11] * Blake frowns. "That guy again?"
  95. [23:11] <@Ettin> >> "Oh, no! God, no." Yaki relaxes slightly now that Amon is name-dropping Underground figures!
  96. [23:11] * Perez frowns slightly at that.
  97. [23:12] <@Ettin> >> "All right..." Yaki puts on a straight face! "Sometimes customer pass through here who I suspect are involved in grey market activities. I wouldn't know, of course, and nothing illegal goes on here. My sister Suki knows nothing of my hunches, I imagine."
  98. [23:13] * Blake snorts derisively at that but leans back and crosses her arms.
  99. [23:13] <[Amon]> "Of course, of course."
  100. [23:13] <Perez> "Right," Perez says wryly, relaxing, too.
  101. [23:16] <@Ettin> >> "Someone came in yesterday looking for the book. I told him it had been sold already. I didn't release Mister Solomon's personal information, of course, but..." she puts a hand to her mouth!
  102. [23:17] <[Amon]> "Hmm... can you describe this person for us?"
  103. [23:18] <@Ettin> >> She turns the holo-screen to him! Yesss, security cameras.
  104. [23:20] * [Amon] observes!
  105. [23:22] <@Ettin> >> The feed shows Yaki at her counter talking to a youngish-looking man with a lot of stylish metal-brown hair, some dumb red shutter shades and a brown coat over a grey-and-blue shirt; he is also the only man alive you have seen actually do smug eyebrows for realsies.
  106. [23:22] <@Ettin> >> "I believe his name was Aiden."
  107. [23:23] * Perez feeds the man's image into a web search immediately.
  108. [23:25] <@Ettin> >> Image! A search identifies him as one Aiden Pluto, died 2098.
  109. [23:25] <@Ettin> >> Hey wait
  110. [23:26] <@Ettin> >> He lived in England and had both of his arms! That contradicts the metal hands Amon is seeing half-disguised with gloves though.
  111. [23:27] * Thursday_SLEP[afk] ( has joined #rpg5
  112. [23:29] <[Amon]> Amon looks at Perez! "Would it be too obvious to say there's something just a little wrong about this guy, do you think?"
  113. [23:29] <@Ettin> >> Blake spots it too! They also notice something odd; he is leaning on the counter with his elbow behind her screen, and when she is briefly distracted by Suki skipping upstairs to talk to her about something, one of his fingers seems to gain a really tiny mechanical arm which slithers out and peeks at the screen!
  114. [23:30] * Blake frowns.
  115. [23:30] <Perez> "Maybe," he shrugs. "According to the digital record, he's British, and dead."
  116. [23:30] <@Ettin> >> He sticks his arm down by his side to hide it when Yaki turns around, buys a cool Halloween wizard cloak and goes. :|
  117. [23:30] <Perez> "That's not as good at keeping people down as it used to be."
  118. [23:30] <[Amon]> "Not only that, he's also a heavily augmented cyborg."
  119. [23:30] * Thursday ( Quit (Ping timeout: 252 seconds)
  120. [23:30] <[Amon]> "Good taste in clothing, though."
  121. [23:30] <Perez> "Yeah?"
  122. [23:31] <@Ettin> >> That might make sense. Amon hears cyborg augmentation is a pretty good way of "preserving" a body according to spirit artists.
  123. [23:34] <@Ettin> >> Yaki is thrown off! Unlike Suki she doesn't start cursing, though. "Oh he didn't!"
  124. [23:34] <@Ettin> >> "I should have closed the window..."
  125. [23:35] <[Amon]> "Either we've found Dick's british undead comrade, or perhaps he's a friend of one of those 'spirit artists'." Amon even does the rabbit ears to go along with it. Dude you are not in a position to be mocking weird wizards.
  126. [23:36] <Perez> "Why settle for one when you can have both? But I like him for our perp either way."
  127. [23:37] <@Ettin> >> Yaki is looking pretty guilty right now!
  128. [23:37] <Perez> "Should we try Wisteria next or go see if Yvonne can dig around in his bank account?"
  129. [23:38] <Blake> "It's not Dick. I had him preparing lecture notes on the Transmutations of Pnom."
  130. [23:40] <[Amon]> "More relevantly, we need to investigate Gilman a little more thoroughly."
  131. [23:41] <Perez> "Not as a suspect, no, but I think he might be able to point us in the right direction."
  132. [23:42] <[Amon]> "Do you have many... spirit artists as customers?" He asks Yaki!
  133. [23:45] <@Ettin> >> Yaki regains her composure!
  134. [23:48] <@Ettin> >> "A few of them. Sometimes they come here to buy strange clothes to attract the attention of spirits." She keeps a very straight face!
  135. [23:48] <@Ettin> >> "For the most part standard occult stores don't stock the... special equipment... spirit artists are after, but there are dedicated suppliers."
  136. [23:50] <Blake> "Yeah I bet."
  137. [23:50] <@Ettin> >> "Is there anything else we can do for you?"
  138. [23:51] <[Amon]> "I see. It's not generally my field, so I wasn't certain -- I'm more firmly within enchantment and conjuration, myself."
  139. [23:54] <[Amon]> "Thank you very much for your time."
  140. [23:55] <@Ettin> >> Yaki bows! You can go now.
  141. [23:55] <Perez> "Yeah." Perez nods. "It's a big help." He pauses.
  142. "Seems like Pluto would have found out who bought it eventually even if you hadn't left the screen on, so don't worry too much about it."
  143. [23:55] <@Ettin> >> She relaxes and smiles! "Thank you."
  144. [23:56] * Norman (ProfessorC@113.59.iig.yst) has joined #rpg5
  145. [23:56] * Norman is now known as ProfessorCirno
  146. [23:56] * ProfessorCirno is now known as Norman
  147. [23:58] <[Amon]> "I would also like this hat," Amon purchases! Then he heads back out to the car where Norman is snoring in a drunken slumber. He has a wizard hat over his plague doctor mask.
  148. [23:58] <@Ettin> >> Suki rings it up for Amon on the way out! "See you later!"
  149. [23:58] <Perez> "Nice place," Perez comments in the car.
  150. [23:59] <Perez> "You might have liked it, Douglass. Cute."
  151. [23:59] <Perez> "Anyone mind if we call Yvonne first?"
  152. [00:00] <[Amon]> "Sure. Just don't tell her that immediately afterward we'll be checking the various dodgy people I house for low market rates for underground connections and info."
  153. [00:01] <Perez> "I'll bite my tongue if I feel the itch coming on." Perez dials Reagan.
  154. [00:01] <@Ettin> >> "This is Reagan." It is!
  155. [00:02] <Perez> "Perez." No, Reagan! She just said it.
  156. [00:02] <Perez> "Yvonne, we think we might have line on the killer, or kidnapper. What crime is it? The burglar, anyway, but there's something else."
  157. [00:03] <@Ettin> >> "A good something else?"
  158. [00:03] <Perez> "Solomon -- Jack Solomon, I mean -- dropped sixty-five thousand dollars down to buy the thing that was stolen from the safe. You have any idea where he got that kind of money?"
  159. [00:04] <[Amon]> "We have a suspect. Also, he's been dead for twenty years." Amon quietly fills Norman in!
  160. [00:04] <Perez> "You hired us to handle it, and we can run that down, too, but your department might be better suited to tracing a money trail."
  161. [00:05] <@Ettin> >> "I can look into it."
  162. [00:06] <Perez> "Thanks. We'll call again when we nail this angle down."
  163. [00:06] <@Ettin> >> Who next? :D
  164. [00:07] <Perez> Angel! someone else want to call, or Perez again? :)
  165. [00:07] * Norman can call this time :(
  166. [00:07] <Perez> >> Go Douglass!
  167. [00:08] <[Amon]> :)
  168. [00:08] * Norman calls Angel!
  169. [00:10] <Norman> "Hey, Angel.  It's Norm."
  170. [00:10] <@Ettin> >> Angel answers! Norman can hear shouting in the background. "Huh. Didn't expect you. What's up?"
  171. [00:14] <Norman> " I calling at a bad time?"
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