|Tina||Dawn was a few hours ago, but the church remains largely empty. It is a slow day for religious services.
Even so, Tina is marching slowly around the auditorium, carefully applying the wick of a brass chandler's staff to the wicks of the many candles in their candelabras, scattered in strategic points around the church. As she works, she softly and rather musically chants a solemn prayer, though her generally soft and sweet voice may deny the mood some of its weight.
|Fern||When it's hot out people sometimes use the expression 'Sweating like a whore in church', and the kid who steps into the church is looking like she's doing just that, and it's not even that hot outside just yet! Wiping the sweat from her brow, Fern heads into the church, looking around a bit as though she hasn't ever been here before. She lingers near the back, nearly stuck against the wall for now. She's not about to go running down to the front to confess her sins and pray for forgiveness, no. She's glancing about and noticing Tina, who she watches.|
|Jacqueline||Though it's early, Jackie is coming up the steps into the church now, her usually-cheerful face set in a thoughtful frown. She pauses just inside the doorway at the back, watching Tina light the candles for a long moment. In her gecko-leather jacket and pants, she looks more like a well-to-do raider than a tech-girl.
She doesn't notice Fern just yet, being focused on the front of the room and the nun at work.
|Kaydin||Kaydin comes in a few minutes later. He moves to take off his helmet and hold it under his arm as he looks around the church. He nods to Fern and looks to Tina. "What faith is used here?" He asks curiously as he watches the nun.|
|Tina||Tina doesn't seem to notice the newcomers until she has finished lighting the candelabra before her. Lowering the staff, she looks at the newcomers and smiles. "Welcome to the church, my friends. How may I help you today? Have you come to pray, or come to stay?"
She stifles a giggle. "Sorry... I just thought that up this morning, and it seemed entirely too catchy. Anyway, how may I help you this day? We honor all faiths that do not preach violence, though we often allow non-Christian faiths to officiate their own services here, as they know them better."
|Fern|| Fern's gaze is drawn away by the one who speaks, and she glances over at Kaydin to examine him afterwards. She stays near the wall, hands behind her and pressing against the building as she starts to slowly rock on her feet, spurs tapping against the ground.
Her lips form a quirked line as she listens to Tina's explanation, and she rolls her eyes towards Kaydin again to see what he says next. As for why she's here? She ain't about to say. Yet.
|Kaydin||"I met a fella who said that everything was a part of a divine plan. I figure even in these times, faith is comforting to some." Kaydin says as he looks to the kid and sticks his tongue out at her before turning his attention back to Tina and nods. "What about those children of atom, do you advocate their beliefs?" Kaydin asks curiously.|
|Ashur|| The bull of Rome breaks through the church's front door. There's thunder in his footsteps, thick-soled boots splitting the ground like tectonic shifts, and in his eyes is an almost manic light. It's a fire matched by the drop-dead gorgeous (in an exotic, brutal way) armor that moulds to his sprawling, muscular torso like wet silk-- it is made from animal hide, leather, that much is clear, but what could make armor like that? It is a shimmering red and orange, the hues liquid, seeming to shift in the light; it damn near glows, the air around it slick with heat, at one moment the red dominating, then yellow, then all slipping aside in charcoal black shadow.
It isn't literally on fire, of course.. but now and then, depending on the angle you see it, it almost seems to be. It burns. It is hot to the touch.
"Sister!" He booms, assuming Tina will be here before he's even seen her. "Come, my Tina. I've a new tale of Dunwich for you: demons are real."
|Jacqueline||Jackie glances up as Kaydin speaks, blinking in surprise. "Oh... hi! I didn't see you come in," she says apologetically, and quietly. She'd rather not disturb the peace of this place.
She has to smile at Tina's words, even if they confuse her a little, the fact writing itself across her face. "Pray or stay? You offer lodgings?"
The sound of something tapping against the ground brings her eyes around to Fern, and she blinks in surprise again. "Oh, hi! I didn't see you there," she says with a smile, trying to keep her voice down. "What's your name?"
And then Ashur comes in. Wearing a red breastplate she can't help but stare at. "Mister Ashur... nice outfit."
|Tina||"Um, no? Sorry if that was misleading... mostly I was referring to the people who come in to get out of the heat for a while," Tina replies, blushing a bit shyly. "I truly wish we could offer lodgings to the needy, but this church just was not built with lodging in mind, unless you count the two teeny-tiny basement apartments used by myself and my fellow staff. I generally don't."
Kaydin's words are met with a faint smile. "No, we do not. But neither do we turn them away if they wish to peacefully worship here, with the emphasis on the word 'peacefully'. Everyone needs a house of worship sometime, after all."
Her head comes around to stare at Ashur as he enters, especially that curious, color-shifting armor. "Um, hello again, Mister Ashur? I don't really know why you call me 'my Tina'," she begins, then blinks. "I see... perhaps you had better tell me what you found out. This sounds like it could be very important."
|Fern|| Though the sticking out of the tongue may be playful, Fern lifts her chin and narrows her eyes at Kaydin, staring him down for a few long, drawn out seconds. Yeah, she's watching you.
When she finally looks away it's due to the sound of that booming entrance, and Fern looks away to glance over Jackie and then to Ashur. This gets an approving nod. "Told 'em. Fuckin' nuclear armor is real," she mutters under her breath as she crosses her arms over her chest and leans back, her side mashing into the wall. She decides to watch the others for now, and no, Jackie! She doesn't say her name.
|Kaydin||Kaydin nods as he smiles at the woman and looks back to the kid. The narrowing of eyes from her simply causes him to smirk a little before turning to Jacqueline and nods. "Kaydin LeGraize, NCR rangers." He says as offers her his hand to shake should she wish it. When Ashur comes in he looks to the man. "Demons you say..." He says with a curious tone. "I been there briefly, the whole place just gave me the creeps but I didnt see any demons. What did you find?"|
|Jacqueline||"S'okay. How somebody else built the place isn't your fault," Jackie replies, giving the nun a smile. "But I can see why folks might come in to get out of the heat. Your AC is great!"
She accepts the offered handshake from the Ranger. "Jackie Wayne. Cool to meet you. I've visited Dunwich, too. That place seriously creeps me out."
She glances back at Fern. "I don't think that's nuclear. It looks like some kind of leather, but I've never seen leather /shine/ like that. And by shine, I mean glimmer-shimmer-almost-/glow/ scare-you-silly shine. It's /creepy/..."
|Ashur|| The brutish man lifts one arm-- biceps like Fern's waist!-- and flexes it. The muscle bulges, the veins along the golden skin pronounced, curling through the bear-like hair. The opposite arm lifts and curls as well, though lower; the effect is something out of an old Mr. Olympia competition.
The purpose of this is not mere vanity, of course; he swells his body, pumps it, and provides a clearer look at the armor. Those who have seen the creatures before might recognize the molten flesh of the hellclaws, the mutant, fire-spewing variants of deathclaws that lurk in Dunwich and the surrounding area. Ferocious beasts, one and all, that burn the ground when they walk.
"Because it is your name," he tells the nun, in a tone normally reserved for the profoundly stupid. "On my first trip to Dunwich, so long ago, I helped slay an unholy monster; a creature, in size and dignity much alike the deathclaw, yet filled with a terrible fire. A flame that poured from the flesh, and drove it to great rages. I wrestled with it, and when it died, it burnt to ash in a wave of searing heat."
A pause, and his arms fall, folding behind his back. "This is the hide of one of those demons."
|Tina||"I cannot disagree, Miss Jackie. With all these candles, something must keep the temperature down to a tolerable level," Tina agrees warmly. "Perhaps being a nun doesn't pay well, but air conditioning is priceless... and so is helping your community, really."
She looks to Ashur and his armor, blinking at first at the flexing. Gradually the story of the monster and the strange shine of the armor claims her full attention. "It certainly /sounds/ like a demon. I begin to wonder if I should investigate this Dunwich myself, if such things are there. Truly there is something horrible and evil there, and quelling it might require the aid of the church."
|Fern|| Fern is now watching Jackie, and as she stands there with that smug little grin on her face she lifts her voice to say, "See? Nuclear. Why else would it glow? And it's not creepy. It's fucking -awesome-," she corrects, now looking to Ashur to examine this armor a little more. Yeah. "Sweet Jesus," she whispers under her breath. "Bad ass." She nods to no one in particular.
As cool as it is, that armor is not what brought her to church, so she forces herself to look away and find Tina again.. here she is. Fern leans back against the wall she and waits quietly. She'll wait her turn.
|Kaydin||"You wrestled with a creature resembling a deathclaw? You are pretty strong. Maybe should come to you for hand to hand training." Kaydin says as he grips the helmet better and nods to Jacqueline. It is then his helmet squawks and talking can be heard in it. "Better answer that. nice meeting you ma'am." He says as he goes about leaving, putting his helmet back on his head.|
|Kaelyn||In wanders a different site. Kae is currently wearing that high-tech skin suit she normally wears, her CORA unit and jeans. It's obvious there's bandages under the suit around her rib-cage and she breaths rather shallow it seems so as to maybe spare her self the pain from damaged ribs. As she enters she stops near the group of people and blinks while listening to talks of glowing things, and then glances around as she notes the AC and all... CORA then says "Adusting breathing on the suit, you should be able to cool off nicely here." Says the A.I. Before Kae smiles and nods. She wanders toward the rest, and then waves a hand, the girl smilin friendly enouh before Kae says "Howdy." She isn't quite as well loud about talkin this time, still trying to keep from yelling and the like.
The girl's crimson aze filters between folks, studying Tina now, then lockin on Ashur before Kae bows slightly "Hallo Ashur, long time no see." she says with a slight grin, CORA isn't quite as nice as she calls out "Ooh lookie! Hello Mr. Titan!" Kae blinks and sighs... Before adding "Don't Mind CORA She's been working over time trying to get me to relax, so she's gotta try and embarrass me all the more." Kae adds and smirks slightly as CORA adds "Ayup!"
|Jacqueline||"I dunno, Miss... nuclear stuff's usually not /red/," Jackie recalls. "And if it's demon hide, it's probably not nuclear. I mean, there were some amazing fabrics made in the ancient days, but I wouldn't call them all nuclear just because of it. And if that's from Dunwich and it's demon hide, I doubt nuclear has anything to do with it," she adds, frowning troubledly at Ashur and his armor.
She nods politely to Kaydin as he excuses himself. "Be careful out there," she says worriedly. "I hope you're not going to Dunwich."
She gives Kaelyn a smile, nodding in greeting. "Hi again."
|Ashur|| As lovely as that molten armor is, those calling it creepy aren't wrong; while Ashur seems a bit entranced by it, it has a -vibe- that makes the skin crawl, and sends shivers down the spine. The malignant poison of Dunwich clings to it like some alien Other.
But, truly, the giant does not care. It is beautiful, it is his, and he will wear it and let others admire it; he aches to test it in battle. If this desire is odd, given he has a full set of salvaged power armor, tank-thick and perfectly adequate protection, well.. that thought just doesn't cross his mind.
"There are none in the wastelands better in hand-to-hand combat than I," he tells Kaydin as the man departs, indirectly agreeing with him. "And, my Tina, should you wish to see Dunwich I will bring you; perhaps I will find more of these beasts. I will break their limbs and strip the flesh, and have fashioned a complete set-- perhaps work the skull into a helmet, mounted with the curled horns."
Kaelyn enters and bows, and the chauvinistic man mostly takes that moment to check out her cleavage.
|Tina||"Take care, good sir. And please do come back, should you find yourself in need of spiritual aid, or just a few hours of cooling-off time," Tina says, by way of farewell to Kaydin as the NCR man moves to exit. Which brings her to Kaelyn as the newcomer arrives. "Welcome to the church, Miss. Have you come to pray, or come to stay and cool off? How may I help you today?" she asks warmly. She stifles a chuckle at CORA's outburst. "Interesting tactics your CORA uses, then, though I wonder how effective they are."
She approaches Ashur, studying the armor thoughtfully. "I won't deny its beauty to the eye, but... it /is/ rather creepy. Not to the eye, but... I shiver when I get close to it, and I'm not sure why."
|Fern|| That light crossing of arms over her chest tightens, and Fern gives a little roll of her eyes towards Jackie. "Yeah, yeah. Well, whatever it is, it's pretty cool. Can't argue that." She starts to smirk again, and finally offers, "Fern," as her name to the other before she gets distracted by Ashur and looks at him. Skull helmet? SIGN HER UP. Hell yes. She nods slowly to herself again at whatever conversation goes on in her head. That's one cool dude.
Fern watches Ashur for a second before she follows his gaze to look.. Oh. It's Kae. And cleavage. Fern looks too, just cause it's here, and then she looks up and gives the girl a bit of a smile.
|Jacqueline||"It /looks/ cool, for sure. But I don't know if it's really good for Ashur," Jackie says, looking at the way the huge man luxuriates in the feel of the piece. It's like the thing's feeding his ego, not just his confidence.
The mention of her name, though, interrupts her thoughts on the matter. "Fern... you're the first Fern I've met," the tech-girl muses, her smile returning. "I've met a Tina, a Kaelyn, a Celeste, an Iris, and even a Sparrow, but you're the only Fern. The only plant name, for that matter! Cool to meet you, Fern."
She looks back to Kaelyn. "CORA being a pest again? I think someone needs her definition of 'help' reprogrammed."
|Kaelyn||Kae glances from Jackie, to Ashur, then to Tina and to finally to Fern, who the goofy geneticly recommed girl offers another bit of candy to. "Here Fern... Enjoy.." This one is a peppermint hard candy, clean of coure. Kae then glances back to Tina and shrugs slowly. "The skin-suit I wear is well a smart fabric, it does nothing more than help regulate cooling and stuff to a better degree than your body by its self. CORA is the A.I. In my modified pip computer... She can interract with the suit and help make and maintain adjustments. She also helps, and reminds incessantly when I'm injured, and can help with a quick prognosis from a doctor." Kae adds with a cheerful smile. CORA meanwhile shows her little miniature avatar on PIP's screen smugglin placing fists on hips and then rubbing her own back. Kae glances at the picture and smirks a bit before glancing to the others. "The suit isn't super crazy, but well, every little bit for comfort helps ya know?" Kae adds and grins a bit, the girl hopping a bit on her toes, before she settles on a bench, she looks to Tina curiously and then nods "As far as prayer? I've only been out of an incubation chamber for a little over a year now. Religion wasn't something I was programmed or trained on saddly." she adds "However the air conditioning is most welcome. Thanks."
Kae's crimson gaze goes back to Ashur and she tilts her head "Nice bit of armor, gives the creeps but nice." she adds with a grin... "Congratulations on finding it."
|Ashur|| "Yes," the man rumbles, staring down at the armor; there's a flash in those golden eyes, and they burn with the same radiance that fills the cursed hide. He places his hand over his chest, fingers curled, and drags his nails along its heated surface. "I will march against my enemies in the regalia of Hades; they will look upon me as a reaper of souls, and kill themselves that they might be spared my wrath." With every word the fingers tighten, until at last that hand has become a killing fist, scarred and heavy. "And I will nourish the dry earth of my home in an ocean of blood, and bring to it growth and life everlasting."
The Legionnaire has always been a mite severe, a mite archaic-- but the raw zeal in his voice, lifting that animal growl until it is like the mad laughter of an evil god, is something new indeed.
He blinks, smiles, and looks toward Fern, beckoning her close and taking a knee. "Come here, little one. You like it, don't you? Go on, give it a feel-- it is hot, but will not burn you. Pretty cool, isn't it?"
Another look to Kaelyn's ample assets, and he nods, before watching Tina as she draws closer. On his knee as he is, he's finally not towering over the pretty nun. But that look-- she might recognize that lustful intensity, even if now it isn't directed at *her* so much as some.. vague, bloody crusade in his imagination. "Soon, I leave for the expedition to Mexico, to seek Poseidon; I will carve a red swathe through whatever bars our way. Fear not, my Tina; no harm will befall me."
|Tina||"I'm not sure it actually is good for him either, Miss Jackie, for what my opinion may be worth," Tina adds softly. "Though I will respect his right to wear his own property, especially given how it had to be earned. And I would be very glad of your guidance and protection, Mister Ashur. Dunwich sounds like a very dangerous place, even without the evil infesting it."
She looks between Fern and Kaelyn thoughtfully. "I am Sister Tina, by way of introduction... what are your names? Not to be pushy, but I don't like to call anyone 'Hey you'."
Then her eyes snap back to Ashur, and she shivers even more noticeably as he speaks. "Mister Ashur? Are you sure you are feeling well? You sound... well, certainly more /intense/ than I remember... and more bloodthirsty. It's more than a little frightening." In spite of herself, she can't keep down a faint shiver in her voice.
|Fern|| "Yeah, well, I never really got around to asking my parents why they chose that, but they did, and what's done is done. Tah dah~," Fern says to Jackie, lifting her hands out to her side to wiggle her fingers. She looks quickly to Kae then, eyes darting to the candy that makes her grin. "Ohh.. Where do you get all this stuff?" she asks Kae as she wanders over and takes it. She girl unwraps it, sniffs it, wraps it again and then slips it into a pocket on her pants.
Eyes drift to Ashur then, and as she starts to head over towards him she grunts, "'m not little, alright? I'm almost as tall as both of them," she says, nodding back to Jackie and Tina, "and I'm only thirteen. What's their excuse? Genetics?" She comes to a halt before Asher then and reaches out to feel the leather. "That's pretty cool, yeah.." She looks to his eyes. "You really think you could make a helmet from a skull? If you bring me one back I'll give you like.." she thinks. "Ten thousand caps, yeah?" She glances to Tina then, seeing how she is concerned, but Fern isn't!
|Kaelyn||Kae glances to Tina and oooh's, "Well I'm ___" suddenly CORA chims in "I'm CORA, the nicely designed highly geneticly modified person here is Kaelyn!" Kae stares down at her wrist and shrugs "Yah, I'm Kaelyn, Kaelyn Silver." She says with a nod aain, then looks to Fern before the girl shrugs "Barter, trade, I also know where this someone who makes and pedals candy... I pick up a little here and then as I now evidently found someone that likes it!" She says with a slight smile...
Kae glances at Ashur and with a tilt of her head nods slowly "Yaaah, yer seeming a bit on the edgy side since ya picked that suit up. But if it floats yer boat and all." she adds and shrugs slowly. Kae then stretches her back, and glances around before looking at Tina curiously "Soo, I rarely get to sleep in good AC any more, y'wouldn't mind me occupying a bench for a few hours would you?" she asks curiously.
|Jacqueline||"Mister Ashur, are you sure you /mean/ what you just said? I mean, that's awfully bloodthirsty. And seriously, have you ever /tasted/ blood? Grossamundo! And I doubt it makes good fertilizer, seriously. Why bathe anyplace in it?" Jackie's trying not to make awful faces as she says all of that, but she can't quite avoid it. She's seriously creeped by this intensification of Ashur's attitude.
She blinks at Fern's words. "Actually, my excuse /is/ genetics: My Mom's Chinese-American. Not the kind that invaded way back when, either... at least, I don't think she is."
|Ashur|| With a laugh, Ashur reaches up to muss Fern's hair; his touch is a little on the heavy-handed side, but there's a certain affection in it. Who knew the big man was fond of children? "You'll no doubt be bigger and stronger than the both of them soon," he tells the girl, "because they're born pipsqueaks. They aren't scrappy like you, child-- seek me out sometime, and I'll loan you an old pair of my boxing gloves, teach you how to throw a punch. They'll need protection for when the men aren't around."
He rises then, looming, and his shadow is long and dark indeed. "My apologies, girls," he offers, clasping his hands behind his back. "The temperaments of women are ill-suited for such talk. My blood burns in preparation of the coming battles, that is all-- a means of preparing myself mentally for the challenges ahead."
|Fern|| When Fern's hair is mussed her immediate reaction is to swing her right fist across and jab at the mussing hand, and she gives a bit of a growl. A shin kick would be next, but Ashur is kneeling down, so that might not be as effective. The girl grunts a little, looks around and back to Ashur, then perks. "Hey, yeah? That'd be cool.. I'm a fast learner, so it wouldn't take but just a few times to teach me.. I'll let you teach me, but under one condition; ya bring back the skull helmet, kay?" Gotta look bitchin' in the wastes, after all.
Fern steps back when Ashur rises, and with that done she looks about again, eyes falling upon Jackie. "Nothing wrong with genetics. You got pretty hair," she notes. Fern looks away again, and soon she starts for the exit, "Later," she calls randomly. Guess she has places to go and things to do!
|Kaelyn||Kae does'nt really wait for an affirmative from Tina, seems the poor woman was not only bruised and beat up, but exhausted too. She's converted her duster, and shirt into a pillow, and well while Kaelyn doesn't make much noise while sleeping, CORA is being goofy yet again and making snoring noises while displaying z's of varying sizes across the Pip-Screen, and in full color to!|
|Tina||Tina stifles a giggle at CORA's interjection. "Your CORA is certainly a handful, Miss Kaelyn. But I'm no less glad to meet you both. And please, feel free to rest here. We won't have mass for a few more hours yet," she says, smiling at the girl warmly. As Fern moves to leave, she waves to her. "Take care, Miss Fern, and thank you for coming by. Do call again," she calls.
She glances at Jackie, then looks to Ashur, nodding. "Perhaps, though it still seems a bit overzealous, even by your understandably highly zealous standards. And your eyes... well, they seemed to glow. And the color looked much like that of the shine of your new armor. I find myself curious," she says, shivering. Glancing at Jackie, she adds, "I may be a genetic quirk rather than a sterling example... my mother once told me that my family line came from Norse and Russian stock, and most of my family was rather tall, if not exceptionall so."
|Jacqueline||"Hey, who are you calling a pipsqueak? And ill-suited for such talk? You've never even seen me in action!" Jackie fires back, standing and meeting the looming warrior nose-to-nose. Standing on a pew, that is. "So what if I'm small, and I don't like talking about blood? Judge a woman by her character, not her height! My shotgun's got enough blast, even for someone of your size!"
She doesn't miss Fern's compliment. It does warm her heart, but she's angry enough not to register it immediately. She's got huge Ashur to stare down, after all. Anger can only help.
Her gaze does stray to Tina when the blonde nun speaks of her own origins. "Nothing wrong with being different, Sister. Mom and I've been that way most of our lives... different from each other, even."
|Ashur|| Ashur meets Jackie's fierce attention with a coolness that starkly contrasts the passion of his earlier words. His hands remain folded in the small of his back, toes pointed outward, legs spread-- a relaxed, commanding posture, leaving him unprotected. "Calm yourself, good woman," he commands, "It is the law of the world: men are to take life, and women are to nurture it. Such was the will of the creator, and that purpose is manifest in mind and body."
He spares the beautiful nun another look, unconcerned with Jackie's intense focus on him; she does not register as a threat, and so he does not respond to her like a threat. "I am sorry, sweet Sister. When I was in the Legion, many of my brothers had a penchant for vivid speech; oral storytelling was a pastime we enjoyed on the march or when making camp. Cunning Caesar knew that a tribe identifies itself, in part, by how it speaks. It sets us apart; even now, removed from the rank and file, Latin is like music to my ear, and colorful words please me."
|Tina||"Miss Jackie, please! You are in church!" Tina protests, gently but urgently. "Or in /a/ church, anyway." The latter comment is a bit sheepish. "Please, both of you, compose yourselves. If you must argue toward such violence, I must ask you to cease, or to leave the church. I don't want to do that, but I cannot allow such violence here," she adds, more firmly. "Vivid and colorful language is one thing, but this is another thing entirely."|
|Jacqueline||Tempted as she is to knock the condescending look off Ashur's face, Jackie doesn't. She's angry, not stupid. Besides, he's married to a friend of hers. "With that in mind, I seem to recall you offering to teach a girl younger than me to throw a good punch. How is that going to help her at 'nurturing life'?"
Oops... when the nun's right, she's right. "Sorry, Sister. I lost my head there for a second," Jackie murmurs apologetically, stepping down from the pew. "I'll step out. I think Miss Kaelyn's trying to sleep anyway."
|Ashur|| Ashur chews on Jackie's question for a long moment, silent in the face of the nun's reproach. When at last he deigns to reply, his voice is gentler, more deliberate; that bestial growl tuned to a comforting rumble. "The girl is a street rat," he remarks. "Was that not obvious from seeing her? All boastful and puffed-up; children are only like that when they're very sad inside. Given her state, I presume her parents either do not care about her or are no longer around." He lifts a shoulder in a shrug. "When you live your life feeling powerless, sometimes all it takes to make you feel better is learning how to throw a punch, even if it's never really going to help you."
The fire inside him has guttered out, for now. Reflecting on Fern's state has put him in a pensive mood. "What is a man if not a shepherd of the next generation? A pair of old gloves and a few hours spent on a jab, a hook, and a straight might make her feel less abandoned." He turns, then, and walks out, without so much as a goodbye.