Zacar landed his plane on the airstripe of the city Stillworth, completing his final delivery for the month to the aircity of Columbia. He put his plane in one of the plane hangers. Making his final checks on his plane, he finished up by closing the doors to the hangers and going to get his payment for the month. Tonight would be another full moon and he only a short few hours to get what he needed done before having to get to his house in the woods. He went on his way to deposit what he had earned into his bank and take a percentage of it and mail it to his family back in Westharbour. It had been three years since he had left Westharbour after the accident, after he had learned what had happened to him.
He was a werewolf. Changed three years ago after touring the near by forest for a place to bring some friends or customers for a good hunt. It had been late and a cold, foggy night. He had been turning back to home when a creature growled in the brush ahead of him. He saw the red dim eyes, believeing it to be a wolf but when it stood up, he knew it was no wolf. A howl had pierced the sky and then it had lunged at Zacar. There was a gunshot and both toppled end over end for a few seconds. The beast had lied motionless on top of Zacar, dead but it had left its mark. Its teeth had pierced into his skin and claws had scarred his chest. When he tossed the creature off of him and stood up in pain to see what it was, he only saw a man lieing dead on the ground. He stood in horror before running and seeking medical attention. After that, he didn't think much of it besides the dead man's face. He never thought that something might be wrong when his wounds had healed quite quickly, never thought about how agitated he had become when the full moon drew close.
By the time he had figured out everything was not right it was to late. The full moon came, and the next day Zacar awoke blood stained and unsure where he was. He had awoke in the nearby forest, naked and alone. He managed to sneak back home with anyone seeing him. Then the news came that someone in his hometown was missing. The man's body had been found a few days later, or what had been left of it. A creature had ripped the man limb from limb and ate most of the meat off the bone. From the blood that had been covering him and thinking about the creature that he had beeing attacked by, he put it together. He knew most of the creatures that had revealed themselves to the rest of the world, and one of those were the werewolves. He ran away after that and never looked back. He was a monster and wished to not harm anyone else
He shuddered to think of his past. He made his way out into the middle of the woods to return home, with a few steaks for his change. Dispite being alone in the middle of the woods, he did not let his wolf roam free. He had made a room with a strong enough chain to hold it and keep it locked up. He never wanted to kill someone again and this was the best way to keep him from doing so.
He entered his house with a few hours to spare before the last rays of sunlight disappeared. He prepared for the night, locking up most of the things in his small house and placing the raw steaks in the chain room. Every hour that past his senses became sharper and his skin burned, the creature wanting out. He locked the door behind him and undressed and placed the overly large collar around his neck. It wouldn't fit him but when he changed it would fit the wolf. Now he waited for the change to come. The ritual he did every night was now part of his common life.
The City of Stillwoth, one of tha few fully rebuilded cities in the once destryed world. Full of wonder, skill and the loud roars of never ending machines, spitting out their smog and fire like restless dragons bound to stay on the ground. Well few were allowed to rise into the sky but only few. Like few creatures were allowed or tolerated in the city, only some threw away their cloak of disguise but those who did suffered greatly under the harsh words and actions of humankind.
Even thou the world was set anew back in the war, the thaughts had changed little, men think they are superior and beasts thinks they are the only one seeking the peace.
How ignorant, how foolish, up till now both sides werent going any further but into another conflict.
How easy it would be if some could just fly away, fly away like those steel winged creatures above him.
Planes...yes that was how those humans called them, metallic beasts moved by the power of fire and water and itīs child.....steam.
The disguised man had found pleasure and interrest in this force, he believed if both sides would aknowledge the power of it and process in dicoverig it together...well then....then peace could fully bloom but this time hasnīt come yet, even he was a creature and feared to be undisguised by men. What horrible outcome....up till now he did everything to prevent it, killed beast and men alike now on neither on their sides but his own.
Evolution, Technical evolution, thatīs what he seeked. The final step to ultimate life, an endless life, to create what he could fear most.
Yes the decay was his daily food, his energy and his rest, without the perishability of humankind or beast he would fade away, fall into slumber or simply die.... who knows? Thatīs why the seek of the immortality was his desire, his wanted and most feared dream.
Immortal like metallic plane which flew above him.
Deeply sunken into his dreams and thaughts, the disguised creature named Doctor Bernhard Heinrich Schweizer watched the sky above him, suddenly catched by shiver as a certain one flew over him. Why? Who knows? The presence just felt....wrong in this city of humankind.
With quick steps the doctor, which most people just call "Plague" or "Tomb", probably related to his profession or weird looking mask, headed towards his home. A dark painted building with a metallic round dome as a roof. The outside was sorounded by a strong metallic fence, protecting the green and flowerish garden behind it. All in all it would look real nice if there woudnt be the fact that fresh graves would peek up from here and there from inside the garden, even serveral gravestones could be seen...the local graveyard.
The Creature entered his house by opening the heavy wooden door with only small effort, the room he entered now was...dark...fusty and crowded.
Crowded with all kind of mechanical devices, stuffed animals and books. Serveral shelf would cover the each side of that room which was used one for an entry and a living room considering a big couch before a chamnin on the other side of it.
A loud caw caued the him to directly head to his couch, on a small table aside of it lied a crow, well what would be left of it, the half of itīs right wing, left face and both legs were replaced by technology. This crow lifed over 20 years now, his first succes in finding the right way to immortality, while most people think that the crow just a simple toy he knew the rather dark secret behind it...heart, lungs, kidney and everyother small organ was replaced by gears and mechs, only the brain was owrking and sended it signal furthermore to the right, replaced parts.
"Oh hello there my friend" The friendly voice of the doctor greeted the bird as he lifted it up, the machinery needed it oil and so he quickly sptayed some in the old hinges of the dead but living girl.
Today way a good day he decided as the bird jumped up and cheked itīs now working limps, flying into the air again.
Today was a full moon and so the perfect day for catching some of "Them", a Werewolf......itīs said their regeneration rate was superior to any other mythical creature and so perfect for his tests....only problem...who would be crazy enough to catch one for him?
Maybe he finds some at the local bar?
The Dwellerīs inn.....a local tavern for the.....well more independet side of humankind, adventurer, travelling merchants, clockwork-fighters, illegal gun-smithing, contract killer, hunters and even more were visiting this rather unnoble tavern but infact Bernhard liked it, for him it was raw emotion. Death and life tollerated eachother here and so were some creatures as well, as long as you can proove yourself you are welcomed...maybe thatīs why it is placed between the harbour, hangar and townīs gate.
By ordering an oil-ale, a very thick liquid with sweet taste, the doctor sat down and listed...observed the crowd inside the inn...maybe he would find someone willingly here...
The world around her clanged and clunged almost like it was an Opera Overture providing lively music to the inhabitants of the city. A music that would go almost unnoticed but she noticed. She was taught to notice the steady beat by her late father to hear for any broken machinery. It was her job after all. This everyday melodic hum was soothing at times but it was mostly a very haunting reminder of that tragic night she lost her father. The two of them lived, breathed, and he died in a clockwork driven world. There was nothing else he knew. There was nothing else she knew. For her sanity's sake, she wished to pass onto something else. She wanted liberation from the life she was currently stuck in, but there just wasn't a very satisfying way out. She didn't have the knowledge about anything outside of that clockwork machinery so what else could she do? There was always the possibility of just leaving everything behind and go out into the forests and hope someone or something would take her in because she didn't know how to live alone in the wilderness. She certainly couldn't handle the seclusion, though. It just wasn't for her. So what else could she do but build and fix clockwork toys, clocks, and pets?
Pershing Square was a lively marketplace and rightly so due to it being located right near the docking station for Stillworth. People and creatures alike perused vendor stalls and window shopped as they passed in between rows of buildings. Sometimes, however, people wouldn't go for the purpose of buying anything but to observe the many talents in play. There were fire jugglers, magicians fake or real, and all sorts of rift raft. Ellie had a particular talent of her own she displayed from her shop, Fawcett's Clicks, Ticks, and Clocks, and yes she did name the shop. The exterior of the shop looked like any other building in the marketplace, save for a few decorative cogs and gears merged into various locations, but the interior is where the talent was. Dozens of clockwork dragonflies and butterflies flew about the room. Toy soldiers marched along cluttered wooden tables, and fancy clocks adorned the walls clicking away. People would sometimes just stop in and view the hectic spectacle of hundreds of clockwork animations ticking away as they did their own thing. To children especially, visiting was the highlight of a market trip with or without their parents. It was always a busy day for Ellie, which she didn't mind. If she wasn't busy keeping order within the shop, she would work in the front of the shop where everyone outside could witness. There was even a large magnifying glass that helped any curious viewer to get a closer look at all the various parts and pieces that went into any machine. Work days for Ellie passed by swiftly with her usually handling everything alone. She didn't mind the work but every time she would glance over to that certain part of the room in front of a large adorned bookcase that sat up against the wall, she knew that's where her father died about two years ago. She wouldn't even fancy a look into the part of the room if she could help it. It was just too heartbreaking.
When it came time to close today, she shoved everyone out of the building and very quickly she would lock the door and close the blinds, hoping that tonight she would not be bothered by anyone. However as part of a new routine to try and feel better before going to bed, she would head to a local tavern or inn, it really depended if it was open or not, and drink just enough to lighten up a bit. It wasn't the best of practices but it at least got her away from home, which was the upper portion of the shop. Tonight, by her estimation, The Dweller's Inn was open and not overly crowded tonight. So that's where she would go for an hour or two until she would depart for home and go to bed. She slipped into her leather jacket because nights up here get a little brisk with that higher altitude air and headed out the door, locking it as soon as she left. The elegant full moon tonight gave a sense of comfort for some odd reason. Perhaps it added to the light generated by all the gas lights making her feel better about walking in the dark? Whatever the reason, she cocked a weak smile as she followed the rising moon towards "Dweller's Inn". It wasn't her favorite place by any means, due to a rather rough looking crowd gathering some nights, but they did leave her alone, which was nice.
As she stepped through the great wooden door to the place, she noticed the amount of people that had come, probably to enjoy the full moon or something. This wasn't a good omen but since she was already here, she might as well stay. The small woman quickly darted for the lit corner of the building and found table that still had somebody's empty plate on it. She scooted the dirty plate to the other side of the table and nervously observed the types of people all talking and laughing, as she waited for a worker to inquire about her pallet for the night.
At any given time, one could expect the streets of Stillworth to be busy and full of people. Most were on their way home, some were shopping and others, like Melker, were out for more nefarious reasons. He moved through the crowd with practiced ease, slipping between people and slowly making his way to where he was needed. Gently pushing people aside, he moved against the crowd towards his destination, a high-class club reserved only for the upper echelons of society. Melker scowled at the thought. He had scouted out the area and it was more of an expensive tavern. The services offered was the same, only much Melke more decadent and expensive. He wondered about the cost, he had seen enough poor people begging on the streets to know that the money spent on, and in the club could have been put to much better use. The building was already in view, a shining, two-storey building situated on a street corner. A flight of stairs led up to a pair of large double doors, with paid mercenaries standing guard beside them.
Melker left the crowd as they streamed past the building, the people seemed to go out of their way to avoid it. He stood at the base of the steps and looked up. The two guards looked quite young and inexperienced, leaning on their rifles as they shifted their weight uncomfortably. Melker figured he could bluff his way in, making a clandestine and thus harder approach unnecessary. He walked up the stairs with his tricorner pulled down and his bandana pulled up around his mouth and nose. As he approached the guards, he said, "Meeting." Hopefully the guards would believe it, otherwise things were going to get messy. Not difficult, or complicated, but messy. Spilling unnecessary blood was not his style. Thankfully, the two guards looked at each other, then confusedly nodded, allowing Melker to open the doors and enter.
Almost immediately, the sound of people moving and talking filled his ears. Murmurs of conversation reached him from each corners of the room. Melker pulled his hat even lower and moved through the lobby towards the grand flight of stairs leading up. His client had told him that his target would be on the second floor, entertaining friends in one of the private rooms. Melker moved through the sparse crowd silently, but it was obvious he didn't really need to. No one so much as glanced at him ever since he entered. It was something Melker had expected, he always had the odd ability to be unnoticeable. No one would notice him, no matter the circumstance. It was almost as if he was invisible, though he was pretty certain that was not the case. If he could perform such feats of magic, he would have had more career choices.
He eventually reached the top of the stairs and turned right, as per his clients instructions. The hallway was deserted and Melker made his way briskly towards the third door on the right. He knew his target's name, and Melker already knew how he was going to escape the area. Taking a deep breath, Melker turned the door knob slowly, finding that it was unlocked, much to his surprise. He stepped in and shut the door behind him. Inside, three men sat around the table, one of them older than the other. "Mr Thomas Kepler?" Melker asked.
"Yes?" The older man asked.
"Someone doesn't like you." Melker said, drew his knife and charged forward, catching all of them off guard. There was no time for them to react. He plunged the knife into the chest of the man, then in the same motion, pulled the blade out and pushed the body aside and jumped through the glass window the man had been sitting in front of. He landed on a rooftop of the adjacent building and continued running. The two other men would have already alerted the guards, but Melker wasn't worried. He didn't know for sure, but he guessed that as an extension of his ability to be unnoticed, they wouldn't be able to give the guards an accurate description of his appearance. Still, the be safe, Melker made sure he was far away from the club before allowing himself to relax.
All that was left was to meet with his client for the final payment. He was to meet him at a tavern known as the 'Dweller's Inn'. Sheathing his blade, he casually walked down the street towards the tavern. He opened the wooden door and stepped in, ignoring everyone and making a beeline for the man sitting alone at a table near the back of the building. Melker pulled a chair out and sat down opposite the man. "It is done," He said simply. "You should see it in the news tomorrow."
The man nodded. "Thank you. Perhaps now with that bastard gone, we can live without his extensive taxing. At least until someone new takes his place." He said and tossed Melker a small bag of coins. "Thank you, Vendetta."
Melker nodded, stuffed the bag into one of his pockets and stood up. He looked around for another seat to take. Sitting with a client was not something Melker preferred to do. He did his job and that was it. They weren't friends, they weren't even acquaintances. He walked to the center of the room and looked around. It didn't seem as if there was another free table, aside from the one where his client was and another one where a woman was seated. Not wanting to sit with his client, since he found from experience that they tended to thank him too much and really get on his nerves, Melker decided to sit with the woman. Hopefully she was a quieter person. Clearing his throat once he was in front of her to get her attention, he pulled down the bandana covering his face and asked, "Is this seat taken?"
When the full moon finally rose into the sky the change began. He felt his spine coil and his blood boil. Out of habit he screamed in agony as it began. His skin streched and bones moved, cracking and popping as they grew and changed to fit this beastly form. Fur grew all over his body, taking place of his skin, his eyes became more wolfish in shape and changed to a gold tint color. His teeth became sharp as razors and his fingernails turned into claws. What seemed like hours was only mere minutes before whatever humanity Zacar managed to keep through the transformation became primitive and all animal instinct. Once the change was completed, the wolf let a howl pierce the sky and tried to leave the room but the chain kept the wolf from being able to break out of the room. It bit and clawed as the chain trying to get free but could not, Zacar had made sure of that even this brutish monster couldn't break through it. After several hours of struggling it gave up and growled a lot at the chain. It ate the raw steaks that Zacar had placed in reach of the chained wolf and nawed on an old bone from an old deer kill Zacar had brought during the last full moon. Once it felt ready again, the wolf attacked the chain again, the results still the same. If anyone had been in the woods they would of heard the rukus through the walls, but hopefully they just kept going.
Jevan walked into Dwellers inn, following the information his contact had given him. (Not willingly he might add, Jevan had to break a few bones to get the man to spill what he knew.) He was hunting a man simply known as, 'Vendetta'. The man had seen his face, though refused to say how, albeit only a brief glance, and had given him the rumors as to where exactly he would be. Jevan twirled his Morning Star, whistling a tune he had forgotten the words to. It echoed hollowly in his armor. Looking around, he looked for details matching the Vendetta. No...No...No...No.......Bingo. He thought as he caught sight of a man standing next to a woman. Event the Bandana matched. Of course, he could be utterly wrong, but there was blood, specks of it, spotting the mans clothing, and tiny pieces of glass. A high observation skill had proved useful over the years as Jevan had hunted. Especially with bounties like this.
Calmly shouldering his rifle into a better position to draw, Jevan sheathed his Morning Star at his hip, also a better position for drawing it. He walked over, his feet clunking on the floor of the inn. When he arrived, he quickly drew the image his contact had drawn, along side the image on the bounty hunting paper. "Excuse, me. Would you happen to know the man in these images?" Jevan asked, holding the images up so the man could see. His other hand hanging down close to his Morning Star. He was expecting a fight.
Ellie had but a few moments to herself as she timidly scanned the crowd of people before a rather mysterious man, with a visible sabre sheathed upon his person, unexpectantly began heading towards her. Did she, unbeknownst to her, make eye contact or gesture to attract this man or did he notice her at first? The reason alluded her as she slowly began to fill up with panic as the man continued his uninterrupted path towards her. Although her face was straight, she was frantically looking around wondering if she was the real subject of the man's interest. There was literally nothing else she could see unless this was the man who had eaten here before and wanted his spot back, in which case she'd be out of their in a heartbeat. Ellie really had a hard time trusting strangers nowadays so she just avoided strangers unless they were customers of her shop in broad daylight. This encounter, however, was really out of her comfort zone.
The man halted in front of her and very carefully, Ellie eyed the man from toe to head. Her eyes met his eyes as soon as he signaled for attention. The man's request of sitting in that vacant seat was a little surprising, but it really made sense judging from the lack of vacancy elsewhere. Her eyes widened as she slowly turned away and looked at the seat. "Um. No, you can sit there. I suppose." she said timidly as she forced a fake smile after she responded. She never bothered to say anything in that brief moment they had together. Alone. On a bittersweet note, another, presumably male, figure made a straight B-line for their section of the bar. This guy was much more intimidating, sporting heavy armor and much larger caliber weapons.
The armored man's immediate action was drawing a small piece of paper with the picture of what appeared to be the same man sitting next to her. The armored man proceeded to inquire about the identity of the man, at first not suspecting the person he was asking was the man in the picture. Whether this was because he was blind in the suit or was stupid, she wasn't sure. She did know that this was probably not going to end well and quietly positioned herself to flee in case it escalated.
Damn. Melker said to himself as the heavily armored and heavily armed man walked up to them and showed him the picture of himself. It was rare, but occasionally someone would be able to get a proper look at Melker. That said, Melker wasn't too particularly worried. He had ways of getting out of trouble, honed from years of getting into trouble and having to get his own sorry behind out of the fire. "Sa inte, je kannit sagea je kan. (No, I cannot say I can.)" He said, his voice containing not a trace of an accent. It was a common language from where he came from, far from Stillworth. This was a method he used sparingly, perhaps only once a year. He had other ways to wiggle out of trouble, but this was the by far the simplest and since he used it so sparingly, no one would be able to tie it to him.
Still, he decided to play it safe. He got to his feet and pulled the bandana up to cover his face. Tipping his hat at the lady, he walked past the armored man. There was another reason Melker wasn't too worried. Armor meant inelegance. The fact that the man wielded a morning star told the contract killer that much. Elegance and grace in a fight counted more than sheer strength. If it came to it, Melker had a few tricks up his sleeves and in his pockets to tip the odds in his favor. His preferred outcome, however, was to avoid a fight entirely. In a place as packed as the tavern, he was bound to hurt an innocent.
He quietly and gently pushed his way into the crowd. Now was the time for him to use his ability. He took a look around him. There were still some people looking at him and the messy state of his clothes. That was going to change very soon. He closed his eyes for a split second and once he opened them again, all the gazes that had been on him previously were gone. No one so much as glanced in his direction. Even the people he had to push away didn't seem to notice his presence. As far as anyone was concerned, Melker had vanished into thin air. Moving quietly and carefully, he made his way towards the exit of the tavern.
Jevan crumpled the paper in his hand and dropped it on the table. Then he sighed. "Why do they always have to do it the had way. Excuse me, I've a contract killer to catch." He said with a nod to the lady. Then he turned towards the exit of the Tavern. He settled himself at the doorway, noticing how people who looked at his target suddenly stopped looking at him. Clever trick that. Unfortunately, I've tracked down actual invisibility. You're going to have to do more than that. Jevan thought as, after he found the man after a few moments of searching,he watched the man make his way as quickly as he could while being unnoticed. Jevan simply waited. When the man walked to the exit, Jevan would follow him closely saying simply.
"Please don't make this any harder than it has to be. I really wouldn't like to make a big scene in the middle of town. So if you could kindly follow me, we can go on our merry way somewhere else. I doubt you'll take that option, but no one can say I never offered." His morning star was ready. Though it did have a nifty little trick few knew about. Making it a little less bulky. "Well? Are we going to do this the easy way, or the hard way?"
That was a huge miscalculation, yes it turned out to be quiet horrible, visiting this bar was indeed a big mistake. Those were the thaughts of Bernhard as he sat infront of his small copper painted table, sorounded by the crowd of the city staring down to his ordered oil-ale. The simple rule of ordering a drink in a Tavern or pub was common around all around the humanīs world but ordering a drink also means that you sooner or later have to face the fact of drinking it. Drinking something woudnt be a common problem to normal towns folk but the simple fact that Bernhard isnīt a common town folk even thou heīs known through all the city makes this problem seem quiet hilarious...but it grew quiet large for him. The option of giving someone a free drink was ruined some minutes ago as the third human was giving him a weird look and the barkepper was also looking strangely at him, now all what was left was to sit down and looking at the mugīs liquid. The mind of Bernhard was racing as finally the wanted solution came up to his mind, quickly he reached under his red mantle, a device which normally wasnīt used, his syringe gaunlet now came quiet in handy, the tubes which connected the syringes with a small tank under his clothes were ripped off and one syringe of his gaunlet thrown into the mug, the tube had been connected with the syringe and the other side was put under a smalll gap he created by lifting his mask.
Yes things turned out fine and so also did the search of two capable warriors...or rather bodies, baits or whatever for his tracking-mission, a mission which would take him to the flying city.
Years ago a story was carried to his ears that up there a mean accident happened, a man was litterally shred into pieces, his bones were chewed off and well he was dead but besides that the murder was never found, well not murder but more beast... Bernhard knew what happened back then, it was a werewolf who slaught that man, a beat he desired to obtain, a beast he needs to obtain and yes...two or three people should hold that things down long enough to get his venoms to work.
Venoms to put that thing to sleep and to get it towards his operatuin table and now was the perfect time...full moon...a time where those creatures would be tracable even thou they only transform fully when the moon is risen, the very ability of his kind to trace the essence of death makes it easy to trace them down since they hold a high regenerative ability...but that just in theory...
Anyways for this mission he needed muscle power, muscle power of two people he just spotted. The one was someone who was barely noticable, even thou he could feel the presence of freshly fainted lifes on him, his eyes refused to see him or rather to be kept on him. The other was simple brutish and well...both of them now had a quarrel, quickly the man pushed himself off the table and stood off, the sudden movement causing a black and copper creature which quietly slept onto his shoulder to protest with an echoing caw, like acting it was hurt it flew up and flattered with his wings, glaring meanly at itīs owner.
"Calm down Krabax" The voice of the creature said, removing th tubes from under his mask to put them away somewhere deeply inside his mantle, quickly he moved his disguised body towards the table where the two men just standed infront, just a single female would be left there, he placed himself aside her and threw a smile at her..well an invisible smile since his mask would disguise it. The very moment he would have joined the female on her table, his little fella, the crow, would also see himself forced to land somewhere near, so directly infront of the women.
"Good evening Miss, today shall be quiet the entertainent" He said and gestured towards the two men before taking a chair and lowering himself onto it, his turning it slightly so that he could face the women and the two men at the same time"
Rudely the crow infront of the women cawed again, like a child yelling for attention but then, turning itīs back to her and scratching itīs black and copper fathers on itīs right wing