The Praetorians, a fantasy cop drama. (Game thread Started/CLOSED Prologue)

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"Well, that wraps that bit up, then," Rory sighed and closed his little notebook, stowing it for now. He dismissed the waiting patrons without too much fuss, sending them all through the front door along with four of his little helpers. The staff would need a bit of a onceover before they went along their way, but that could wait a bit, his man at the backdoor was patient as ever. Rory offered Mordecai a weary smile as the ambulance attendants saw to the wounded shredder. Rory helped them lift the man onto a cart, and took the opportunity to palm his wallet as he was rushed away. Once the room was clear, he waggled it at his compatriot, "You did a great thing today, Doc. That fellow owes you his life, but I'm afraid the doin' ain't done just yet..."

Rory approached the door to the small annex of the restaurant from which all this chaos apparently sprang, stroking his chin thoughtfully. He squinted slightly and turned back towards Mordecai, "The witnesses weren't a load of help, but one thing's clear. Our victim was here, tucked away in this room long before our gunman filled him full of silver, and that gunman came strapped and prepared for murder. Somethin' went awful sour, and I'm sure it weren't legal by any stretch of the imagination. Could you chat up the staff before you send them on their way? One of them's bound to know where the shop owner's got to, and if anyone knows what folk were gettin' up to in this room, its him. In the meantime... I think I'll take a bit of a sniff, see what I can turn up."

The young copper chuckled and tapped his nose, turning back towards the door way and padding into the room gently, closing the door behind him. He took a deep breath and set about sorting our the various sensory information. His sense of smell was keen, not as keen as when he wore the wolf to be sure, but still on par with the average mutt. Perhaps that, and a bit of good old fashioned search and toss would shed some light on the reason for this spat of violence.

Collin suddenly found he had a lot more problems than an upset stomach when the gunkin opened fire in his direction. Thankfully, the gunkin was hardly taking careful aim and Collin was already doubled over so it was easy to drop to the ground as bullets tore around him. Best policy when someone opens fire on you is to pretend to be dead so they don't bother coming around to finish you off, so Collin stayed flat until he was sure no one was coming to kill him. The sound of several bins crashing to the grounds prompted Collin to finally look up and he realised their quarry had made a break for the sewers.

"The sewers? That's hardly sporting, I don't have night vision!" Collin knew that going down there would be a very stupid idea but he knew that a Loose Cannon wouldn't resist something like this, and Collin would rather be the loose cannon than the Comic Relief. "Bah! As if I need my eyes to catch this goon, you want to go after him?" he asked Draven, she actually had night vision so it would probably be a good idea to have her along.

"Uh no! no, no; no I don't know anything about them."

Marc barely paid attention to the non-stop words, just watched as he weaseled his way around him. The rat-faced human immediately turned a corner, making Marc sigh with relief. Then he said something to the Talin, who Marc thought he just saw bribe. Was he warning them?

Marc, the ever curious semi-immortal, felt the need to talk to the youths, who were both more than likely a member of the gangs. Still, the chance they weren't, and were willing to 'snitch' was always there. He approached them, less nervous than if he were talking to a human.

"Excuse me, men," He began, sizing them up and making himself more intimidating through pheromones. "We've heard of nearby gang activity, and we were wondering if you had any information on either the 'Pride' or 'Dawn claw' groups you'd be willing to share."

And there he went into the sewers, but not before firing some badly aimed shots in their direction.

"The sewers? That's hardly sporting, I don't have night vision! Bah! As if I need my eyes to catch this goon, you want to go after him?"

Sameera gave Collin a look that basically meant: 'Why do you even bother asking?'

"But first... take this." She drew her gun and unloaded it, giving Collin her remaining three shots "You used up your ammo, didn't you? I'm more comfortable with using this." She pointed at her rapier. "Now let's go."
She climbed down the ladder into the darkness of the sewers and, as she reached the ground, stepped into the smelly stream of... "Oh Gods! It's in my boots! Someone definitely owes us a drink for that..."

It was dark, so dark that she could only make out silhouettes. Her night vision was indeed underdeveloped, as she noticed.
She listened carefully in order to hear, in which direction the gunkin was fleeing.
"I think.... that direction", and started walking. Just to be on the safe side she drew her silver sword, which left the sheath with a singing sound.

"Oh... oh..."

It was never easy seeing a woman cry. Even when the bereaved in question was simply mourning a housepet, some part of Archibald wanted to comfort her, to try and ease her suffering, even by the slightest fraction. Chivalry was a concept very dear to the Ampères, one that had been drilled into the man from a young age.

But sadly, so was duty. Though it would have been proper to take a few minutes to calm her down, the officer knew that that wasn't part of their assignment. He and his squad were supposed to be patrolling, not wasting time searching for lost cats and caring for the elderly.

"I'm sorry for your loss," he said simply, hoping that the simple phrase would be enough to help Julie. Then, turning to Laura, "We'll be sure to inform our superiors about the robbery. Like I said earlier, a squad should come down sometime in the next few days to take care of it."

Turning around, Archibald jerked his head at the Talin and Warg-dog. His eyes were hard and irritated, but his voice still carried the same professional, neutral tone he had addressed the women with. "Come on. We need to continue our patrol."

Not bothering to go back for the Warg's shirt, the officer began to pace away from the small group of neighbors that now surrounded Julie and Laura.

"Come on. We need to continue our patrol."

Cali frowned. "W-Wait!Don't you think we should look around a bit. There has to be a .way to locate this creep..."

"Umm... no. I'm okay thank you, officer." The husband seemed to regain leave of his senses and realised just who he was talking to. "Sorry for waisting your time, sir. I'll uuhh - I'm sure we can sort things out the missuz an me."

Beyond the room his wife was still frantically begging Chris for help and was in the process of trying to drag the poor shedder up the stairs by his lapels.

*****

"We've heard of nearby gang activity, and we were wondering if you had any information on either the 'Pride' or 'Dawn claw' groups you'd be willing to share."

"What do you think you know 'bout them?" One of the talin said, sizing up Marc. Their friend gave a wicked smile, letting his fangs show and gave a shout to some others down the street. Another pair of talin youths approached the officer, pacing around to his side and swaggering like they were invincible.

All four of the thugs wore red somewhere on their person and had grown out their claws to a length that was cabable of doing some real damage. Like any group of young men trying to seem threatening they started hurling insults and threats around, not caring if anyone could understand them or hear them over each other.

"What you even doing here old man?" "This aint a place for your kind!" What kind of badge is that anyway?" Thinks he's a cop, doesn't he?"

One of them, the alpha of the group it seemed, stepped forward and got right up into Marc's face. "You should just walk on grampa." His going into a low growl. "You're stinking up the place."

*****

The back room of the restraunt was only half what one might expect. Most of the shelves were stacked with boxes full of general supplies for the place or other pieces that didn't need to be kept cool while in storage. But there was a clear space given over towards the back where someone had set up a small round table and four chairs.

They were all currently thrown to the ground right now, along with a deck worth of playing cards and some scattered notes of cash. Nothing insane but there were a good few R$50's in the mix. The rest of the place smelled of tobacco, gunpowder, sweat and alcohol. A mix of bullet casings were strewn across the ground as well and hidden around one of the many shelves that filled the room was a back door that had been flung open. Presumably this was how the other card players had escaped.

"But first... take this." She drew her gun and unloaded it, giving Collin her remaining three shots "You used up your ammo, didn't you? I'm more comfortable with using this." She pointed at her rapier. "Now let's go."

Collin thankfully reloaded his weapon, deciding it might be a good idea not to waste all his bullets on pointless lunacy this time around. Well to be honest, his only plan was to empty his gun into anything that tried to rush him in the darkness and hope that did the trick. Holstering his weapon for the time being, Collin clambered down into what may as well have been the void for all the use his human eyes were down here. Collin stepped off the ladder into what was probably something disgusting, Collin was almost glad he couldn't see right now.

"Oh Gods! It's in my boots! Someone definitely owes us a drink for that..."

"I'll ask Novak about it when we drag this lunatic back to the patrol car," replied Collin, probably not even looking in Draven's direction, confused as he was by the darkness. He carefully reached out until his hand was resting on a solid surface and waited to figure out what the hell he was going to do in this situation.

"I think.... that direction"

Draven spoke again and her words were followed by the sound of a blade being drawn. Collin turned and towards the sound and began to walk in that direction, feeling his way along the wall. By straining his ears he could just hear Draven's footsteps and follow them but it wasn't going to be easy. He sincerely hoped the gunkin hadn't gotten far down here.

Mordecai breathed a sigh of relief as the ambulance arrived to take away the wounded Shedder, and was grateful to them when they said that the regular Police had been informed, as it was apparently standard protocol for these matters; something which Mordecai would note down later.

Rory meanwhile offered him a weary smile as he helped the ambulance crew to life the Shedder onto a cart, secretly palming the wallet away before they departed. Once the room was sufficiently clear, Rory waggled it at Mordecai, "You did a great thing today, Doc. That fellow owes you his life, but I'm afraid the doin' ain't done just yet..." To which, Mordecai replied with a small smile.

"Thank you Rory, I must say you did a fine job yourself. Let's hope Collin, Sameera, and Sergeant Novak are having as much luck with the runaway driver and his gun wielding compatriot as we are here." The two officers approached the small annex of the restaurant that served as the starting point for all this chaos. Whilst Mordecai was observing his surroundings, trying to get a feel for the places and hopefully notice a clue or two; Rory was thoughtfully stroking his chin.

"The witnesses weren't a load of help, but one thing's clear... Somethin' went awful sour, and I'm sure it weren't legal by any stretch of the imagination. Could you chat up the staff before you send them on their way?... In the meantime... I think I'll take a bit of a sniff, see what I can turn up."

"Fair enough Rory, put that nose of yours to work, see if it can turn up trumps with a few clues." Mordecai said as Rory entered the room, shutting the door behind him, leaving the doctor with the assorted staff that were left. As some were slightly fuming over what was happening, others were trying their best to calm the situation down.

"Could you all come over hear please; I know it's late and you have duties to perform, but our part in the investigation is not quiet finished yet, and well I need to ask you a few questions."

"And why should we answer them Talin?" Asked one of the chefs, only to be interrupted by one of the bus boys who were trying to keep things calm.

"Show some respect will you Alfred, this gentleman here has just tried his hardest to save that wounded man's life out there."

"Thank you. As I was saying, I need to ask you staff members a few questions; well one at first, more may follow depending on what kind of answers that I get. First off, have any of you seen where the owner of this restaurant has gotten to?"

Chris sighed. It was too late now to back-pedal any further and now he had this mess to deal with. He quickly replied to the upset woman with a calm voice. Well, as calm as he could force himself to be. He said, "Apologies ma'am. That man is a constable of the Praetorians, and so am I. We witnessed a disturbance in the neighourhood, i.e. a lamp flying out and smashing a window. After a discussion, we decided to investigate this disturbance - me on the ground floor, him on the second. Now, I have explained myself; what about you? Are you the one who threw the lamp?"

"What do you think you know 'bout them?"

'Found em. Great.' Marc didn't know them by color, he barely went outdoors and when he did he was left alone for the most part. Now, his first interaction was getting seemingly all of them mad at him. At the same time. Impressive.

Marc was good at subtle, tiny movements, like undoing the clasp on his holster and placing his hand on the revolver. He'd never shot it, and wasn't exactly trained to do so, but he had heard tidbits. Hold breath, watch for recoil, and aim for center mass, so as to not sever arteries in legs or arms. But he really didn't want to hurt these kids; a blood bath on the first day would look terrible in a report.

"You should just walk on grampa. You're stinking up the place."

This brought his attention back to the task at hand, several clawed talins who didn't seem to know cops carried guns... Marc quickly cooked up a quick plan, brilliant in it's simplicity.

Quickly raising his knee for a quick bit of testicular trauma, pulling his gun up. It was still pointed at the ground, away from his feet, as he tried to bowl himself out of the center. Quickly raising it, he fired off a loud round, hopefully getting them to scatter.

"Good." Jason replied, concealing much of his relief. I hope you have a pleasant day, sir."

He left the apartment, through the door this time, and with long, quick strides soon found himself back on solid ground. As he exited the building, he spied Hemingr talking to the quite clearly distressed wife, with a sullen young girl beside her who looked to be her daughter. There was also, Jason noted, resisting the urge to groan, a small crowd of other concerned citizens who had gathered. They sure as hell weren't going to make wrapping this this up any easier, and to cause a scene had been the last thing Jason had wanted.

'Where is Lloyd?'

The anger that well up inside him then was so immense it was a wonder Jason didn't lose control right there and transform on the spot. That sure as hell would have given the mob a show. That arrogant, slouch-shouldered little fuck! If the Dark Kin had had his doubts about Jason's course of action, that was one thing, and Jason would admit it hadn't exactly gone off without a hitch; but for fuck's sake! Sergeant Novak had made it pretty fucking clear that this was gang territory, and Jason had made it pretty fucking clear that he was the one who knew the area, and that going off on your own here was a bad. Fucking. Idea! So, instead of staying, speaking up and arguing his own point of view, that shiny-toothed shit-for-brains had made the absolute fucking genius decision to just mosey the fuck away all by his fucking self! Now, if he got himself in trouble, he had no back-up. More importantly, if the lamp-through-window incident had been more than just a row, Jason and Chris would have been stuck with no back up from him. Although, If Lloyd's approach to police work was to just shrug and walk away, Jason had to wonder what use he would have been anyway. Regardless, if they all made it to the end of this shift minus bullet holes, Captain Ackerman would be hearing of this.

"I'm very sorry for the disturbance ma'am." Jason said through gritted teeth, and almost shaking visibly with rage as he approached the woman. He shot Chris a brief look that clearly relayed the question 'Are we done here?'.

The sound of a gunshot in the distance was faint, but unmistakable all the same.

'You have GOT to be kidding me!'

Sameera followed the sounds of footsteps.

~At least we're walking into the right direction.~

They were already following the gunkin for a few minutes, but she had the feeling that they were not coming closer to him, not even by an inch. Her already little patience was about to snap.

"Come back here and fight like a real kin! Not like one of those puny humans!", she yelled into the darkness.
She then rembered Collin and turned around, whispering "No offence."
She wasn't sure, however, if it was such a good idea to fight in here. The two praetorians definitely had the disadvantage here: Collin... well, Collin was a human and Sameera's night vision could be called subpar at best. Additionally her left eye was practically blinded due to the blood from the laceration.

"Come back here and fight like a real kin! Not like one of those puny humans!", she yelled into the darkness.
She then rembered Collin and turned around, whispering "No offence."

"None taken," murmured Collin, "I can be puny and you can be insane, we'll make a great team." Collin was assuming the gunkin was fleeing because he didn't want to tangle with Draven, if Collin had come down here blind and alone he'd have been no match for the Dark Kin. "Do that mind control thing and make him come back here," suggested Collin quietly, "or does that only work against humans?" Collin wasn't overly sure how Dark Kin worked, he'd heard just about million stories alleging that they drank blood, had poison coursing through their veins and could just straight up vanish into thin air if they felt like it. The stories about superhuman strength and night vision seemed accurate enough though, at least he hoped Draven could see where she was going.

"Do that mind control thing and make him come back here, or does that only work against humans?"

"I would have done that already, if I could. Also it's not really mind control it's.... you know, it's just too complicated to explain it now. I'll tell you later, once we're done here."

Sameera wrinkled her nose. The smell was getting stronger/worse. And...
"Am I imagining things or is the water level rising? Because that would be worrisome."
She really hoped, she was mistaken. Otherwise they needed to finish this quickly.

She could still hear the gunkins footsteps, noticeably nearer now. "Looks like we're finally getting closer."

"W-Wait!Don't you think we should look around a bit. There has to be a way to locate this creep..."

Archibald huffed in response, and paused just long enough to shoot back a quick reply.

"Honestly, Constable," he began, addressing but not bothering to look at the Talin, "I don't know. Perhaps it'd be possible to track down "this creep" with our limited knowledge and resources. It's unlikely, especially considering that we have nothing to go on, but I suppose I can't say for certain that it's impossible.

"However, there is nothing I do know." The officer turned back, just enough so that he could stare at his squadmate with a single, steely eye. "It is not our duty to do so. The Captain instructed us to patrol this area, and we are equipped for precisely that: Patrolling. If we encounter a mugging, a robbery-in-progress, or anything else along those lines, then of course we must step up to stop it. But solving a days-old crime? Tell me, were you given the equipment to dust for fingerprints or to secure and analyze evidence, warrants to search nearby areas or suspect locations, or even the slightest hint of information about this place? Or are you simply foolish enough to believe that your naked eyes and gut instincts are enough to solve the case? Do you really know nothing about procedure or due-process? Tch."

Looking away, Archibald continued to walk away from the alley and back towards their patrol route. "We already have a task assigned to us. I suppose I can't simply tell you to follow your orders, so if you want to waste who knows how many hours screwing around, then go right ahead. Rest assured, I will be sure to tell Captain Ackerman about your playtime."

"Am I imagining things or is the water level rising? Because that would be worrisome."

It was. The two of them had found a crossroads where the currents of various sewage lines converged, swirling and swelling into each other. Luckily there was a raised sidewalk made out for workers, though time and sewage had both done their part to wear it down to a smooth, slippery, health hazard. Among all this the dark kin they were chasing was completly lost. At least until he slinked out of the shadows and grabbed hold of Collin. He pulled the diminutive officer up to his chest as a human shield and bared his teeth at Collin's neck, apparently he'd abandoned his gun. The dark obscurred the view of the criminal but to Sam the subtle change in the air was clear as day. Their perp had released a fear inducing pheromone into the air, reflex action more than anything. He had to know it couldn't affect her though what it might do to Collin remained to be seen. For now he just tried to back away from Sam and drag his hostage with him.

*****

"- Now, I have explained myself; what about you? Are you the one who threw the lamp?"
The woman stammered for a moment as she tried to work out the best answer to give i.e. the one that wouldn't get her in any trouble.

Luckily the sound of a distant gunshot and the screams that usually follow these things. She and her husband looked expectantly at the pair of praetorians. "Shouldn't you two do something about that?" She asked.

Meanwhile, down the way, the group of talin thugs that had been hassling Marc were scattering like startled deer. On of them made their escape a lot slower than the others as they limped away, nursing the injury given them by Marc's knee.

*****

"- First off, have any of you seen where the owner of this restaurant has gotten to?"

The staff squabled among themselves for a moment, none of them seemed to be able to decide on what to tell the officers. Until one chef broke rank and threw his apron to the ground.

"I'm done! That's it, finished, I'm finished, I can't take this any more!" He stormed off out of the restraunt. "Damn mobsters! Sick of 'em I tell yah, everyone knows what kind of place this is but do they say something? NNNNOOOOOooooooo!" He went on.

The rest of the staff tensed even more as the sound of sirens gor closer. Tje regular police filed in and set bout the usual business of handling a crime scene. One was selected to talk to Mordecai. "You the one that called this in?" He asked, sizing the kin up like he didn't know what to make of him. Maybe he'd never seen a talin with green hair before."We can take it from here, lad, you can get on your way." He waved the praetorian off before rejoining the rest of the human force.

Cali listened to Archibald's words, clenching her fists in anger. "How can you be so heartless?!" She practically shouted, but he seemed to ignore her.

She glanced town at Rat beside her, and, smiling, bent over and petted him on the head. "Well, at least you understand..."

Marc grinned wider than he should have. His ears were ringing as he looked at the fleeing Talins. Fight or flight, thank god they chose the latter. He did not have the ammo and liked hqving all his blood in him. He glanced at the limping one, too slow yo get away. He whistled as he approached, slapping a pair of cuffs on him, using Night Kin strength to force his hands behind his back. He looked at his surroundings as he began reading off the gang members Miranda Rights.

"Right, you have the right to remain silent. Everything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law." Marc looked around again, the gunshot was still messing with his hearing so he had no idea if reinforcements were coming. He kept his gun out just in case, pressed against his upper back. On the bright side, arrest on the first day looked amazing on a report. Downside was tthey'd have to hoof him back...

Unhooking his radio, he attempted to talk to Jason. "I have an arrest, suggestions on how to get him back? "

One moment Collin was carefully feeling his way along the grimy wall in the pitch darkness of the sewers and the next a figure rushed at him from the shadows. Despite his previous plans of firing his gun like a madman, Collin had no time to react as the Dark Kin seized him and wrenched him backwards. Collin might have been relieved that the Dark Kin apparently didn't have a weapon, if not for the fact his razor sharp fangs were inches away from Collin's neck. It looked like a Dark Kin was never truly unarmed. Whatever logical thought Collin might have had next was lost as he was suddenly overcome by an intense panic attack. His thoughts shot off in every direction and he began to twitch and tremble, rapidly gasping for breath.

"Fangs!" was all he managed to blurt out before his knees suddenly buckled and the Dark Kin was left to hold him upright.

"Shouldn't you two do something about that?"

'Really? Do you think so? Any other pearls of wisdom on which to send us on our merry way?' Jason so dearly wanted to snap, but instead he bit his tongue and answered "Yes ma'am.", and without further ado jogging across the street. Of course, for a man his size, Jason's jogs could cover great distances in not much time at all.

"I have an arrest, suggestions on how to get him back?". came Jason's voice through on the radio. He'd clearly managed not to get himself shot then, though that did not make Jason any happier about the situation.

'How about we tie the two of you together when I kick your ass all the way back to the precinct?'

"Just keep him there, we're coming to you." he replied, before turning to his remaining partner. "Chris, call it in. See if the regular cops have any cars going spare."

Sameera suddenly heard something, something dangerous, but was too slow. The criminal grabbed Collin and used him as a human shield and hostage, threatening him with his fangs. The point of her sword was directed at the kin's face.
Slowly but steadily he moved backwards, Sameera following him, while neither letting the distance between them grow nor shrink.

"Fangs!"

"Constable! Get a hold of yourself!", she barked at Collin while also releasing pheromones. Rage inducing pheromones. She figured that she couldn't weaken the other kin's pheromones effect, her pheromones were too weak for that, but she could at least divert Collins feelings into a different direction. Anger and fear is an explosive mixture.

Her eyes, burning with cold rage, fixated the gunkin. "Coward! What do you plan to do? Use your teeth like a savage? Do you intend to lower yourself to the level of a mere animal?! You're pathetic!" She tried to provoke him, so he wouldn't notice what she was planning: waiting for her pheromones to take effect and let Collin do something stupid, then overwhelm the distracted criminal. She already noticed a small ray of light from one of the manhole covers above them. As soon as Collin would act up, she in turn would hold her sword into the beam, trying to blind the kin.

~Let's hope it works.~

There was a reason it was called flight or fight, you were supposed to do one or the other. Unfortunately for Collin, he wasn't going to get a choice either way because his fear began to warp into a burning rage. He was somehow both enraged and afraid at the same time. He began to wildly kick and flail, repeatedly slamming his head back against the Dark Kin, seemingly oblivious to the fangs that had terrified him only moments before.

"Try and take my blood then!" he roared, "and I hope you choke on it!"

Rat closed his eyes and yawned, tail wagging absently from Cali's touch, before he suddenly realized what was happening and bounded after Archibald. Standing up on the man, he pulled his clothing from his squadmate's arms, ignoring the mutterings he was highly capable of hearing, and trotted into an empty alleyway. He shifted quickly, already warmed up from the last one, and pulled his clothes back on quickly. He didn't mind the wrinkles, but grimaced at the loss of his shirt. He buttoned up his jacket to make up for it. It was a surprise these city folk didn't balk at the sight of any skin, with how nervous it made them to see any they deemed unacceptable. He stretched as he exited the alley, readjusting to using two legs.

Something was tugging at him though, something important. His brow furrowed in thought, before it dawned on him. "The same crime repeated." His frown deepened, before he broke into a grin directed at Archibald. "Stumbled on trouble."

A satisfied grin parted her face as her pheromones took effect. Collin was raging, the kin was distracted. Sameera took a step forward, held her sword into the light and turned it in way, that the light was reflected by the silver blade and shined right into her opponents eyes. The result was a screaming dark kin, shielding his eyes with one hand. Night vision wasn't always an advantage.

She dashed foward, grabbing Collin with her free hand and teared him out of the gunkin's grip. She quickly lunged at the kin and attacked with her sword, with the sword's hilt to be more exact, hitting his right temple. But it seemed as if he was tougher than he looked. Still blinded and seemingly unaffected by the blow he started a fierce and desperate counterattack, whipping the sword out of her hand into the darkness. She heard a clanging noise behind her.

A guttural growl left her throat.

'Well, this has escalated quickly.' Chris thought as he fumbled about with his belongings. The whole thing was a mess; interviewing ladies and a random arrest, what next? Rescuing cats? At least Chris liked cats, but that was beside the point. They had been told to investigate gang activity in the neighbourhood, and that goal still hadn't been reached. Perhaps now was a good time to notify the others of his... abilities. If the person arrested was in fact a gang member, that he could go undercover, so to speak. Then again, that line of thinking was just counting chickens before they hatched. Best to wait until the status of the arrestee was confirmed. He found the radio, and pressed hopefully what was the right buttons, "Er... Hemingr of the Praetorians here, a arrest has been made in the west-side bordering Redfields. Umm... requesting a vehicle to transfer the arrestee to HQ."

Jason and Chris came on the scene only a few moments after the call was made. Quickly taking in the alleyway, Jason saw that no-one was nursing any bullet wounds, although the Talin on the ground looked to be in some considerable discomfort. The sound they're heard must have been either a warning shot or a miss, and Jason wasn't sure which answer was better, if any. Still, no one required an ambulance, which at least soothed his fury somewhat.

"Come on." he said to Lloyd as he reached the two. "Let's get in back to the street where the car can find us." As he said this, Jason looped his right arm under the Talin's left, held behind his back by the handcuffs, and hauled him to his feet, as if he weighed no more than a bag of flour.

"Fashion statement is it?" he asked rhetorically, noting the Talin's grown out teeth and claws. "Try anything with those, and I'll punch them out of your face and make you sit on them all the way to the station." he added gruffly.

After he'd said that, he took a brief moment to shoot Lloyd a look, to give him a small appetizer of the chewing out he was going to receive as soon as they'd dropped off the little punk. It would have to wait until then though. Police needed to show solidarity, especially in the presence of suspects, or all their authority would leak out through the cracks. It wouldn't do to have the bag of garbage Jason was carrying take that kind of story back to his gang buddies. When their was no-one else around to hear though, Jason was gonna have some serious yelling to do.

Rory whistled as he went about his search, the scene before him a familiar one. A little hideaway in a low-end restaurant, a card table and a few half-empty liquor bottles. Folk hatched plans in places like this. They rubbed their hurts together and schemed over newer, richer tomorrows. The warg pocketed the few scattered bills that remained, no use letting good legal tender go to waste. He crossed his arms and got to work, rebuilding this sad little scene in his mind, hazarding a guess as to what went down here and if was worth pursuing.

Four chairs, four players, but in all this sweat... not four scents, five scents, one real faint, lingers on the silver casings but not much elsewhere. So four players, interrupted by the gunman, exchange of fire, mixed shell casing types. No blood from the gunman though, and only the shredder tasted silver. A hit then. Gunman enters, fires on his target, turns to flee to getaway car, other players give fire, miss, flee the scene, leave the shredder. Mates, but not close mates, none stuck with him long. Low level players for sure, tighter security otherwise, but players nonetheless.

A small frown lingered on Rory's face. This shop was on Red turf borderlands, and Reds didn't tolerate competing outfits. If this was spat between two other crews coming up, it would need to be dealt with, either by the Praetorians or... after hours. Father would need to be informed one way or another. Rory bent low and took a deep whiff of each chair, sorting out the scents like a blood hound, looking for a clear trail. Heard a bit of commotion going on in the restaurant proper, several new pairs of feet tramping about, the city cops. Rory sighed and headed for the hidden exit at the back of the hideaway, it led to a cramped corridor along the back of the adjoining building, and eventually, an exit into that alley at the end of the block. The scent trail kept clear right up to the exit, where it joined the sea of familiar city smells. Rory circled back around to the restaurant's back entrance, slipping through the door's and dismissing the lad he'd set to guard. The city cops didn't seem thrilled with Mordecai's presence. It made sense enough. City cops liked things simple, open and shut. Illegal card game gets out of hand, shots exchanged, end of story. Possibilities of organized crime, secret exits, and especially Praetorians, mix-breed amateurs, these just muddied the waters. Rory was content to let them go on thinking that, simple people had their uses after all.

Rory waved to catch his current partner's eye, motioning for him to follow back out into the alley, away from the scene of the crime and out of the city cops' way. Once back in the alley proper and well out of earshot, Rory offered his fellow officer a wry grin, "So much for solidarity and the free exchange of info between departments, eh? They're none too fond of the smell of us.... Speakin' of smells though, I picked up a few in there, three lads runnin' in the same direction. I think it's worth a look, care to indulge in a bit of inhuman detective work?"

The Dark Kin holding Collin hostage was suddenly screaming, and it certainly wasn't anything to do with his futile attempts to injure him. The Dark Kin's grip loosened and Collin struggled forwards only for Draven's hand to lock around his shoulder and forcefully yank him clear of the fight. He stumbled backwards and lost his balance on the slippery walkway, almost tumbling into the rushing stream of sewage water. Collin spun awkwardly to avoid this fate and was able to remain on the walkway, albeit crashing painfully to his knees. Thankfully, the sudden pain helped clear his head somewhat, his thoughts were still somewhat fuzzy but he was no longer completely out of his head. Unfortunately that didn't stop him having stupid ideas.

Draven's blade spun out of the darkness and clattered to walkway ahead of Collin, with the noise followed by a growl. This fight was taking far too long, hence it must be of great importance, this wasn't a simple arrest, it was a showdown. Collin crawled forwards, fumbling around managing to cut himself on Draven's sword before he finally found the hilt and picked it up safely.

"Enough!" he shouted into the darkness, pulling himself upright and gesturing in the Dark Kin's general direction with the sword, "You, sir, are sneaky ambushing sewer rat and I demand a rematch." Forget that Collin had no idea how to use a sword properly, he was convinced that the Dark Kin only got him because he was taken by surprise. "I'll take it from here Draven, this clown won't know what hit him."

The restaurant staff soon began to squabble, none of them wanting answer Mordecai's question, when suddenly one of the chefs snapped and threw his apron to the ground. "I'm done! That's it, finished, I'm finished, I can't take this any more!" He soon stormed off out of the restaurant. "Damn mobsters! Sick of 'em I tell yah, everyone knows what kind of place this is but do they say something? NNNNOOOOOooooooo!"

What staff remained got increasingly more tense as the sounds of sirens drew near, which hailed the arrival of the regular police as they filed in to assess the crime scene; as one was selected to talk to Mordecai. "You the one that called this in?" The man asked, to which Mordecai simply nodded as his response. "We can take it from here, lad, you can get on your way." The officer soon waved Mordecai off before rejoining the human officers.

Mordecai then noticed Rory leave the room he was in earlier, and wave to catch his attention, and motion to follow in the back alley. As soon as they were both out of the way and out of earshot, Rory offered Mordecai a rather wry looking grin. "So much for solidarity and the free exchange of info between departments, eh?... Speakin' of smells though, I picked up a few in there... care to indulge in a bit of inhuman detective work?"

"That's what we're here for Rory, besides, I was getting sick of the place. And whilst I didn't get much out of the staff members, one of the chefs did make mention of mobsters as he stormed out; so I guess that is something to go on at least. He said, and I quote;

"Damn mobsters! Sick of 'em I tell yah, everyone knows what kind of place this is but do they say something? NNNNOOOOOooooooo!"

In any event, before we set off on this trail you found, we should probably radio in with a status report, and inform Captain Ackerman or at the very least Sergeant Novak about our progress."

"The same crime repeated. Stumbled on trouble."

Archibald couldn't help but sigh in frustration. It seemed that the Warg had finally decided to enter back into the conversation, and that his preferred method of communication involved using pointlessly cryptic phrases. What, was he supposed to be speaking in some sort of code or something?

"And what, pray tell," the officer muttered through gritted teeth, spinning around to face his newly humanized squadmate, "do you mean by that?" Honestly, was it too much to expect this lot to speak sense? Were they simply intent on being as confusing as possible?

Rat gestured towards the crowd gathered around Julie and Laura, comforting the women. "Listen." Almost every single one had the same stories, losing a pet or being robbed, sometimes both. "Not a coincidence." He shook his head, then leveled Archibald with a calm stare. "Cannot ignore this."

The fight continued and Sameera managed to slowly gain the upper hand. She may have been blinded on one eye, but so was he, too. Additionally Sam was stronger and had a bit more combat experience. It was only a matter of time.

"Enough!"

Sameera glanced quickly into Collin's direction - and promptly recieved a painful hit from her opponent. She growled, made a sidestep and succeeded in bypassing the kin's guard, grabbed his head an smashed it against the wall.

"You, sir, are sneaky ambushing sewer rat and I demand a rematch."

Still not letting go of his head, she pulled him closer to her and ran into Collin's direction.
~It's time to teach him a lesson.~

"I'll take it from here Draven, this clown won't know what hit him."

As she reached Collin, she lifted the kin up, only to then smash him into the ground right next to Collin. His moves slackened and she immediately seized the opportunity to put on the iron handcuffs. As she held them, she could feel an uncomfortably tingling sensation, even through her gloves. Once she was done, Sameera planted herself in front of Collin.
"Denied. Also, you might want to return that to me." She pointed at her sword in Collin's hands. "You know, I have one rule, and if you want to have a good time working with me you'll have to comply." She brought her face extremly close to Collin's. "Do not. Touch. My stuff. Especially not my sword. Understood?"

"The same crime repeated. Stumbled on trouble." "Listen." "Not a coincidence." "Cannot ignore this."

Cali stopped to think about Rat's words. It did seem awfully coincidental all the crimes involved robberies of items or pets...

"Alright then, so what do you propose we do now? Ask if anyone saw anything?"

"Cannot ignore this."

Finally. The mongrel said something that made a modicum of sense. Even if his assertion was entirely off-base, at least he was saying it in a way that Archibald could understand.

"Alright then, so what do you propose we do now? Ask if anyone saw anything?"

And it seemed that the Talin was joining in with him. Fantastic.

Not bothering to hide his annoyance, Archibald fiddled with his glasses, adjusting them until they rode a millimeter or two higher on his nose. It was a bad habit, yes, but it was one of the few he tolerated within himself. It gave him something to do for a few seconds while he struggled to find the right words or understand the scope of his situation.

Needless to say, his situation was not looking good.

If it was only one of his squadmates violating orders, he could report them easily enough. But if it was both of them... Even if they did end up disobeying the Captain, it would be their word against his. And while his word was undoubtedly more valuable than theirs were individually, he wasn't sure who Ackerman would trust if they tried to defame him together. Tch. This was why there was no sense in working with cretins like these; they always banded together when it came to their illicit activities.

Wonderful. Unless he intended to lose face on the first day on the job, he had no option but to play along with his squadmates' desires. Even if it meant going against orders himself...

"Fine, fine, fine," he muttered, finally releasing his spectacles and shooting a cold glare at the Warg and the Talin, "if the two of you are so intent on ignoring the Captain, then I suppose it would be irresponsible of me to leave you to your own devices.

"However." Pausing for a moment, the officer gestured at his compatriots, directing them to certain parts of the street. "Wherever possible, we will be following whatever regulations or common decencies we can. So you," he said, pointing an accusatory finger at the mongrel, "will not be talking to any of the victims. With your 'eloquence', there's no telling how many of them you might drive off. Instead, take a look at the list of stolen goods from the [insert last name here]s household, see if there's any rhyme or reason to it. And you," the finger swung over to the Talin, "and myself will be talking to the other victims. You will try to gather as much information from them as you can; find out what was stolen, what pets went missing or were killed, any suspicious characters lurking about."

Stopping for a moment, Archibald stared at the other two Praetors. "Understood?"

Naturally, he didn't bother to wait for a response. "Fantastic. Let's go."

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