Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hit the Deck

We're not leaving the house for the next few days unless we absolutely need to. There's a lot of problems flying and I'd like to stay out of all of them. Diesel has left to make another run so there's not as much brute strength in the house as there should be and there's more and more complications building up.

First, Soulpatched is in town on some sort of rampage. He's coming after some guy who's name is also Ryan. That is not okay with me. I think the trope is called 'One Steve Limit.' Meaning I don't need confused with some other guy. There's already enough people out there who would like to try to squish me like a stink bug. I don't want to get in trouble for something stupid like my name.

I also don't trust him around Lucia at this point. She's been in touch with one of his friends, Maya, and I'm getting the wrong vibe off of this guy from the way everyone is talking about him. So that's reason one why we're staying up here.

Reason two is a lot less simple to avoid.

Tony's gone and crossed the line. Again. I don't think any of us are surprised. It's a matter of who he crossed the line with this time though. Leo and.....Andy surprisingly. Or not you know, he brought Marco into it.....

Any way. Leo met Andy on the job a few nights ago and they exchanged phone numbers. Andy still lurks the blogs here even though he can't comment on Lucia's anymore. They both saw the last mocking comment that Tony made when Lucia and I thought that giving our son the middle name of Renard would be a good memory to our friend.....well Leo's not about to let some mongrel dis his family. And Andy is still plotting revenge after Marco got killed.

I think they're going to do something stupid or brave or just something out of rage. And I don't want any of us to be anywhere near the ground when it happens.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Demo Man

Since I can make TF2 shout outs too. Even though I'm a bad Demoman. And the only thing that really counts as a shout out here is that both topics have the word 'demo' in them. It's not even the same sense of the word. I gave up being a Demoman actually. I'll be a Sniper thanks.

Any way, Luc is going to let me post about yesterday's demonstration because it's a "house wide" thing instead of just her interest. It was definitely house wide though. Right before dinner, everyone here gathered around out on the patio. Luc and I sat in some nice deck chairs, Sammi sat on the railing like a lunatic, Diesel stood by her to keep her from falling off, Tori took the table, and even Liesical and his PTSD symptoms slunk out to watch the fireworks. Literally. Fireworks.

We were waiting around for a couple minutes before Leo came outside with his backpack. He had this huge grin on his face. I know he's ready for work tonight. It's been a long time since I've seen someone so enthusiastic to get back. That was the first time I saw him grin like that actually. It's pretty weird to see because the burn scars cover part of his lip and it gives him a killer uncanny valley effect. That's another thing we have in common.

He put down the pack and it made this huge thud. Metallic. Like the prop frames in band used to when someone dropped them on pavement. If anyone could have taken a step back they would have. But nobody could so we stayed where we were.

"Watch n' learn, ladies and gentlemen, slenderfolk of all ages." He said as he unbuckled the top flap of his bag. "I'm not gonna get a real flame going up here, but I'll show you the whole range of motions." He had wanted to find an isolated spot in the woods to maybe catch on fire for us but again we're not too keen on leaving with all the dog people down there, like Luc said. The balcony did just fine and his demo was cool enough without the fire. "It'll be a good warm up for me," he went on and looked up at us. "'cause I've gotta be out of shape by now."

We all watched like our lives depended on it as he pulled two metal bars, three feet long a piece, 4" wide and 1" thick out of the main pocket. I was sort of confused then. What does that have to do with fire starting, I thought?

"I-beam segments?" Diesel asked, confused as me.

"Just watch." Leo smirked and held the things out to his sides. His arms were open wide like a bird getting ready to dive off of a building. He stood there for about ten seconds before flicked both of his wrists downward at the same time, and then there was this incredibly loud metal clanking. Sharp. And a click at the end of the noise as the object locked itself into place.

The entire bar had folded out and I saw then that it wasn't solid at all. There were about a dozen and a half slats that had comprised the original bar that formed a heavy sort of ribbing. Each separate piece had a sharp distal end like a knife. The ribbing was connected by thick brown leather pulled taut by the slats folding out. All I could think of was Avatar Kyoshi. I mean, he sure fit the bill. Huge, stern, and with those weapons....

Lucia leaned forward and laughed. "Motherfucking fighting fans. You can't be serious." She had a huge grin on her face as Leo pulled the things closer to his body and looked over to us.

"I have to make myself unique somehow, miz."

We all watched a little skeptically at first. Fans aren't really intimidating in the grand scale of weapons. But with his first move, we all took the skeptical back and watched in awe. He lunged forward suddenly, striking at an imaginary target with the razor rim of one fan. I didn't think it would be so aerodynamic but it swung easily as if he were swinging a knife. At the same time, he brought the other arm forward with all of his force in a wide arc. It made a dull, muted roaring sound.

Everyone felt the wind come off of the blow a few seconds later. We were all standing at least twenty feet away from him but everyone's hair got blown back a bit. That's when we dropped the awe and realized that Leo is no laughing matter.

"They work like bellows," Lucia muttered sounding every bit in disbelief, "he literally fans the flames."

He made another few strikes and cuts with the rims using both arms, one at a time, each making the swooshing sound of a blade, all in different directions: backhand, forehand, parry an imaginary blow, wind up with the other arm and swing so hard I can't believe his arm didn't leave its socket. It hit me kinda slowly how strong he must be physically to handle those things like they're nothing. Or how much practice it must have taken to do that.

He looked back at us and grinned again. "I'm rusty after three weeks, sorry."

"You call that RUSTY?!" Sammi yelled from the railing. Diesel had an arm on her to keep her from falling back as she flailed all over the place. "That's fricken' amazing!"

"Heh. I'm just getting warmed up."

He went on to do more complicated maneuvers: more of the actual fanning in between a few odd strikes and parries. I could picture the air currents being forced into shape as a crazy wind whipped up on the patio. Once he even pulled back, shut one of the fans so it looked like a bar again, and swung it like a club or a bat before flipping it open again to parry.

He kept his eyes firm on his imaginary enemy moving faster and faster as he tried to kill the invisible foe. He dodged and ran in circles, always attacking or defending himself. Three minutes passed before he clicked the fans shut and threaded them through loops on this belt/harness/ammo belt thing he was wearing. He shrugged and reached for his empty thigh holster, pulled out an imaginary flare gun, leveled it at Invis-o-Bill, and said "Bang."

By the time he was done and turned back he was sweating like a monster and we were all dumbstruck. Nobody knew what to say as the displaced wind died down.

Diesel started a slow clap, though. We all joined in. Leo just bowed and said "Well, I hope watching me get my groove back was entertaining."

Oh it was. It really was. I'm glad he's on the same side as us. I'm looking forward to working with him for the rest of the month.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Beat Up Bunch

If I didn't know any better, I'd say my sitting room was a doctors office waiting room about now. I have a black eye on top of more normal things, Leo's got earplugs in because he's got a migrane and wants to ignore Liesical, Liesical is jumping at every sudden movement and probably gave Leo the migrane to begin with, and Diesel might have just gotten himself impaled with a knitting needle for poking Lucia's stomach.

Wait. Let me go check on that.

No, that shreik of terror was just from her threatening him with it. Haha.

Any way. We're all getting better or better than we were, but it's still kinda funny 'cause we all look like death. It doesn't help that the weather is out there being bipolar again. We've seriously had hail, sleet, rain, and beautiful skies alternating in the past four hours alone.

D'ah there goes the rain again.

ANY WAY, I got back to work last night after getting a little holiday leave, too. It was a little different this time than normal though. Amy suggested to Lucia and I that I start wearing a mask to work to cut down on the number of fighters recognizing me and figuring it's a good idea to try to beat me to a pulp. :| This black eye was the last straw because now they're starting to come in groups and actually land hits on me. Apparently, I'm getting to be well known around here for all the easy kills on idiots I've been racking up....oh well! Infamy is nice in it's own kind of way. Actually, when the boss saw me I think he was confused as to why I suddenly started following proxy fashion trends.....I tried explain it to him but I don't think he gets this whole "I kinda value my life" thing.

I'll post a picture of my mask to my Sketchbook blog when I have time to get a good one from Luc's iPhone. Knit gave me some great ideas while I was painting it. The lighting in here sucks right now (even though in a few minutes it probably won't) and I don't think the candlelight gives it its full effect. I might draw a portrait of myself in full costume though just for fun. I went with the costume thing 'cause I figured if I'm going to be wearing a mask I might as well go all out on making myself look typical/uncanny. It worked too, haha. People that saw me used to get squicked out or weak kneed because I guess I'm startling to look at, but last night I teleported into a room and made some girl scream and run. I felt good about myself. :D

I need to finish a portrait of a good friend first before I do that one though. The one of myself. Maybe I should sit down in front of the mirror and do some serious drawing tonight before I go working again...yeah. That'll be nice. I haven't had time to do that in forever. That way Luc can sit with me and keep knitting the baby blanket she's working on without me distracting her for help because I suck at Pokemon, haha.

This house needs to make a collective effort to look less of a mess between now and dinner though. We're getting Chinese and we don't need people facedown in the noodles at the table.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Unexpectations

Ryan started this post before he went off to work last night, but I'm going to finish it for him. He got punched pretty hard in the face and is consequently completely blind until the swelling goes down, so I'm being his seeing-eye-Lucia for the moment. Here goes:

Lucia and I weren't ready to meet Leo in person.

I guess it goes to show you that it's a small world after all and no matter how well you think you get a read on someone through the internet, you never know what they'll be like in person. Or what they'll look like. Or what their last name is if you're not smart enough to ask.

When Leo first dropped his invisibility and stepped off the train, I had to do a double take. I could have sworn that he was my old student mentor, back from the grave and looking mad enough to beat me within an inch of my life again. It took me more than a second to see the differences in their appearance. I couldn't get past the size and the glasses. I'm not exaggerating the size either....I'm no shorty but everyone in the Bohnne family makes me feel an ant.

"You Ryan, man?" He said. He had walked towards me right away. I think he knew me from the start because I don't look anything like a regular person but he just wanted to make sure. You can never be too sure. He had two duffel bags thrown over one of his shoulders and a really big, heavy looking backpack over the other one. They were all khaki. We asked him where he got them, actually-- turns out he knows Ren's old trick: army surplus stores work wonders. He has a combat cap like mine, too-- only brown instead of black.

"Yeah." I said. I didn't know what else to say.

"You looked spooked. What, am I scary? I figured you could handle these," he waved his hand towards the burn scars on the left side of his body, "looking like....you do." He hesitated because he's a lot more polite than a lot of people and I guess he didn't want to offend me.

"No, it's not the scars." I said. I shook my head and extended my hand to be more polite. Especially if he was going out of his way to be. I was not off to a good start in my books. "It's....um....you're not related to a Renard by any chance, are you?"

"How do you know him?" The look on his face was piercing. It was a look I knew too well actually. Ren would always use it if he thought I was up to something I shouldn't have been. Which to be fair I usually was so I usually deserved it.

"He was a friend of mine." I said quietly. "You look a lot like him. It sort of took me off guard."

"He was my little cousin. We all look the same." He sounded genuinely upset. I guess he already knew what had happened.

"I have a lot to fill you in on before we get back to my place then."

I wasn't sure how Lucia was going to take it so I was really worried at first. Leo and I took our times getting back to Antithesis. We moved in teleport time for the sake of not being followed home since we've had a lot of problems lately but I gave him the whole abridged situation about

That's as far as he got.

I'll finish this up quickly for him, so I don't drag on like I usually do with my own posts. He wanted me to talk first about the fact that Leo's going to be staying with us for most of the rest of the month. Their boss is going to give him another two weeks for the concussion to improve, but after that, there's shit to be burnt down. That's his job-- aside from the information networking stuff that Ryan does, too. He's promised to show us his weapons of choice once he gets a little better and feels like lifting them-- that's what's in the big pack-- 'cause he promised that they're awesome, haha. I'm already wondering what sort of godforsaken flamethrowers this man has found in his travels.

His whole affinity with fire made me think of Swan's story, actually.

The other thing I'm supposed to touch on is Liesical. Somehow, he found his way back here from Washington state again (which renders us asking Louis to say 'sup to him, moot).....being chased by Tony's ilk all the way. Sammi and Diesel came in with him at around five AM. And boy oh boy, if he was twitchy before....

So we're up to seven people here, as of today. We're one away from capacity, and-- though three of those seven are slightly beaten up right now, everyone's in fairly good spirits. We've made some serious progress on our home library, so most everyone's sitting out on the balcony and reading a book of their choice-- since it's a beautiful day, but nobody's quite feeling up to going anywhere. We all need some time to chill out, kick back, and enjoy life.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Pit Stop

Since yesterday, I've been emailing back and forth with a guy named Leo. He plans to come into town sometime on Tuesday. He'll be staying with us for at least a week.

The reason for the long stay is because he's recovering from a nasty concussion and he needs a place to crash without going off the radar. I know the feeling. Like I said....I've been talking to him and he seems to be a lot like me. It's been a long time since I've met one of my coworkers that can teleport and go invisible too. I don't know if he can do the other stuff I can, but those two likenesses are enough to make me eager to talk to him in person.

We're also all starting to come back down to earth haha. Today was the first breakfast in a week that didn't involve trading Pokemon.