Logs:Halloween In July

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Halloween In July

Characters: Cheshire, Charity, Nicolas, Jacob, Gert, Stasya, and Hawthorne
Date: 2020-07-09
Summary: Several members of the Autumn Court get together to discuss things, exchange information and gather some glamour at a movies-in-the-park event. From a spooky gazebo.

It's double feature time out at the park. It's a warm night but
  the humidity's down and there's a breeze. The recessed bowl of the stage 
  and seating is blocked off of the miniature amphitheater situated in the 
  heart of the place, but the hill above it is wide open, with folks       
  setting up their blankets and picnic baskets and lawn chairs. The Summer 
  Special Events list has advertised showings of Psycho and Halloween back 
  to back, for some summer fun out of the sun, although it still lingers   
  slightly above the horizon when the first movie starts. Families mill and
  mingle and watch free movies in the park.                                
          At the crest of the hill, with a little plackard that reads      
  'Reserved - Private Event', a lonely gazebo stands, odd and in some cases
  antique chairs arrayed, rather than the homogenous blanket and lounger of
  the citizenry below. A card table is arrayed with a spoooooky chip and   
  dip tray that looks like a sugar skull, and a plate of expertly decorated
  mini-macarons are done up to look like eyes, or have little icing spiders
  on them. And the most teeerrrifyiiing food of all, the six foot sub from 
  the loooocaaaaal saaaaandwiiiich shoooooppe!


That weather? Not too shabby. It's warm, but not 'Louisiana In The Summer' warm this evening, low 80s as the sun's going down, and a nice breeze coming in breaks it up. Even the humidity stayed away so that folks could come out and play. Summertime, the clear time for a GOOD TIME. In the park. Watching horror movies. One of which is even called Halloween. October doesn't have a monopoly! The gazebo atop the hill crest looking down at the gathered throng watching the screen tests on the big backdrop projector is currently being fussed over slightly by Ash Hawthorne in a gray button-down shirt and waistcoat, with a pair of crisp slacks, to look presentable, and is getting the outer wrapping taken off of a six foot sub from Joey's Alright Sandwiches. It's a power move, if you're from the 70s after all. Dead leaves have kind of clustered around the gazebo like way more than is reasonable for this time of year, but it adds to the ambience! The orange glow of his ember-eyes stands out a bit more amidst the gathering gloom, just right for a meeting of the Ashen Court, and the sundown start time of the park's evening entertainment. First up: Psycho. Hitchcock on the Hillside.

It's finally the cool, cool, cool of the evening, and Nicolas is there. The doctor arrives in a fairly casual outfit of gray slacks, a white short-sleeved silk shirt, and dark brown loafers. His dark eyes sweep the movie crowd as he makes his way past them and up to the gazebo. "Good evening," he murmurs to Hawthorne. "I believe we were both at the meeting the other night, but I don't think we've been introduced? I'm Doctor Nicolas Galan." He extends a hand for a quick shake, but he clearly intends to move on and find a seat, freeing up the host to greet others and hopefully getting the meeting itself rolling all the sooner.

Gert ambles her way along the grass up the hill, approaching the gazebo like a lazily circling shark. Her little cane spins in lazy circles through the air as she walks, and she whistles a high, reedy tune as she goes. The warmth doesn't appear to bother her; she's wearing the same Chaplinesque suit as ever. Doesn't seem to come off for anything, that suit.

"Hello, dearies," she says brightly as she approaches. That wicked witch voice is like glass scraped down the spine, but the actual tone is quite warm and friendly as she touches the brim of her bowler hat with her cane in a sort of salute. "I do hope I'm not too awfully late. I wouldn't miss this for the world, you know."

Her bright little eyes turn towards the screen for a moment, and she grins broadly. "I missed quite a lot of cinema while I was away, you know," she says. "Haven't had the chance to catch up. And I hear these are proper spine-tinglers, too. What's on the docket?"

Stasya might wear the Crimson Crown (although not literally wearing it at this moment), but Fear also holds a claim to this Wizened's otherwise very Wrathful heart and she comes bearing yet another tray of goodies with even more of those artfully horrifying macarons. "I couldn't stop making them..." And so here's about another four dozen that she sets on the table before giving a quick glance around. "I hope I'm not intruding."

Cheshire slowly walks her way into the gazebo with her slinky black dress on. A polite nod of her head is given before she greets, "Good evening." She is a new face to New Orleans but the scent of autumn leaves emits strongly from her as she makes her way towards the refreshments.

Heeled, knee-high black boots with a bit of witchy-hippie edge to them. Black sundress. Black shawl, decorated with embroidered roses in autumnal shades and lots of fringe. Charity looks delighted when she makes her way into the gazebo. "Darlings," comes the rumbled Brit's greeting, one hand lifted to waggle her fingers. Pulling, from the leather-fringed purse she carries, a bottle of absinthe, one of whiskey, and a red wine. Offerings, to add to the table.

Hawthorne is set up for an excellent round of joking handshakes and saying 'Doctor,' back and forth, though does actually say "Doctor," when he greets Nicolas, and adds in "Ash Hawthorne. We were, I think, yes. Welcome!" He seems to be at least projecting relatively 'up' for his generally taciturn affect. When Gert approaches, he waves and says "Hi again, come get comfortable, get something to eat if you like, drinks are in the cooler." There's a very dad-like RTIC chest cooler by the table with sodas and more alcoholic options. And some plain seltzer because we are the real monsters here. His attention is drawn to Cheshire and the indistinct form with the very distinct eyes. "Evening, welcome, I don't think we've met. Glad you could make it." Stasya gets a little bit of a twitched grin at the compulsion macarons, but adds "Nobody is going to complain, majesty." Finally, when the vulpine British figure appears, bearing bottles, he gives a thumbs up and says "Hi. Thanks everyone for coming. I wasn't sure that a formal meeting or anything would serve our purposes, but the freehold is still in younger days, and I felt like it might be a good idea for us to get to know each other, see if we can come together as a body and maybe do something for the freehold if we can manage it. The movie thing seemed a good opportunity, should be some glamour for the taking and all that." It's a lot of words for him, and he wears an expression like maybe he'd leave it at that except for pushing himself. "So, for those of you who I don't really know, I'm Ash, you can call me Hawthorne for short. And we've got our Summer monarch here as a guest, so, I mean, I assume most of you have met her. So that's cool. If you're into that kind of thing. So. Hi."

"Good evening," Nicolas reponds to Gert with a polite smile, a greeting he repeats for Stasya, Cheshire, and Charity as each of them arrive. He's not in charge so he's not about to tell the Summer Queen she's intruding, and Charity's donation to the party earns her a faintly amused look from the doctor. This amusement lingers even though Hawthorne deftly avoids the old joke. After the handshake with the host, Nicolas moves on to try one of the eyeball treats, along with a napkin. Then he settles in to nibble and listen.

"Hello, lovelies," Gert says brightly, waggling her gloved fingers at the approaching courtiers. "And Your Sugary Goodness, of course. Fantastic to see you. Especially if you're assisting in the catering." She eyes the macarons with obvious and disgusting eagerness; the sight of her tongue dragging over those monstrous teeth is something that one would normally expect to see only in their most horrible nightmares.

But the grin is genuine, at least, if terrifyingly pointy. She ambles over to the table of treats, retrieves a plate for herself, and spends a moment with her fingers waggling greedily over the various options indecisively before glancing up again. "Well, now," she says. "You're all making this old lady-" who doesn't honestly look particularly old "-feel mighty underdressed for the occasion. Should have brought out the proper motley, I suppose." She gives Charity and Cheshire approving, professional nods, then snatches up a macaron for herself.

"It sounds like a plan to me, dear," she says, in response to Hawthorne. "Though I'm all for just sitting about and watching the nickelodeon, once we're done. Not often I'm invited out to the talkies." And she gives another heart-stopping grin before wandering over towards the chairs, plate piled high with sweets.

"We all do our best to help out," Stasya gives a smile towards Gert as she pushes the platter a little close to Gert. Catering is something that the sugary witch can certainly help out with. And while the heat of summer might be the overwhelming majority of her mantle, there is a few crisped leaves visible every so often. She tilts her head a little towards the direction of the projector screen down below watching for a moment curiously. "Certainly more effective for harvesting than a ballet."

Cheshire offers a soft smile as she responds with her French accent, "No we have not yet. But I am Cheshire. I heard about gather and felt I should come out and say hello." As Stasya is addressed as her majesty, a respect nod is given as she says, "Merry met your highness." As she spies the macarons, she fondly smiles and begins to gather up some of the delicious treats for herself.

"Doctor," Charity nearly purrs to Nicolas, when she gets that smile from him. "An absolute delight to see you here. Can I get you a drink?" She's going for the absinthe herself, and even withdraws a little slotted spoon to do things up right. Gert gets a quick flash of fanged smile, before her fox-bright eyes go to Hawthorne as he speaks. "I'm glad that we could all get together," the Beast muses, as she finishes setting up her drink. The Queen gets a dip of her head, and a wink of greeting. "The snacks look delicious."

And in wanders thew baby Autumn, Jacob. He's dressed as usual in a silken, well-tailored charcoal suit, with a dark orange shirt to accent it. His dark, curly hair is a mop, refusing any attempts to restrain it. Those dark, depthless, almost alien eyes look out from underneath it. The rest of him is more difficult to look at, his form just slightly blurred, slightly out of focus, as if he's only mostly in this world. It hurts the yes after a while. The Wyrd is strong in this one.

And now there is a crispness to the air around him as well, the scent of cut crops and decaying leaves. Faint, but there. He pulls along a rusty old red rider wagon loaded with bottles of booze and zombie bears. Ok, they're teddy bears, but they look like zombies. Just in case anybody embraces the other side of Autumn, being afraid, and needs something to hug. Jacob glances around at the gathering, offering a little wave to Gert and Charity. Stasya gets a brief look, and then he smiles and offers her a wave as well.

Hawthorne shuffles over to put a hunk of the big stupid sandwich on a plate, along with some chips, and a single macaron, all stately. "Cheshire, then. Welcome. Glad you were able to make it out." He goes to the railing of the gazebo and leans over it, watching the movie beginning to show on the screen and observing the flow of mortals, before he makes a pivot and falls into an old creaky wingback chair and crosses his legs. "So yeah. The Freehold began with Winter, so we haven't really had an opportunity as a court to... Come together to a purpose and.. I mean, we might as well? One thing I'd like to do tonight is take some notes, maybe work on kind of a phone tree on topics of expertise, the sorts of knowledge each of us specialize in that we can use to ... Do what we do?" A small little shrug of suggestion, and a faint lift at the corners of his mouth. When Jacob walks in he lifts his non-plate hand in a small wave, "Hi there, pull up a seat! Or a little red wagon of hooch. That also works."

"Hitchcock is quite good," Nicolas notes to Gert after she expresses interest in the film. The doctor seems more at ease, or at least relatively unconcerned about the horror-clowns terrible teeth, than at their first meeting. And since Stasya is here, Nicolas takes a moment to clear up a professional matter. He takes a step closer to the Queen and studies her closely. "Completely recovered, Ms. Andreeva?" His attention is briefly drawn aside when Charity addresses him, and the Fairest gives a reserved sort of chuckle for her tone. Still, he doesn't say no to a drink. "Would you? Thank you." He looks to the bottles she's brought. "Whiskey, please." Jacob's appearance, and the wagon he's towing, earn a curious look. "Good evening," he offers to the latest arrival.

And after Hawthorne tees up a topic, Nicolas is game to take the first swing. "I'm Doctor Nicolas Galan." He repeats his name for the newcomers. "I'm a surgeon by training, though I enjoy research into just about any area. Which brings me to something I wanted to discuss this evening -- establishing a Freehold library. Something to add to the agenda, if there's time." But not something he wants to derail everyone else's introduction.

There's a look of mild surprise on Charity's face when Jacob comes on over to the dread gazebo, wheeling his wagon along behind him. And then a curve of a grin. "Jake. Welcome home." A gleam in those amber eyes, amusement. She winks to Nicolas, and gathering up a glass, sets him up with a triple of whiskey. The wolf is a terrible bartender. Or a fantastic one. Drinks in hand, she wanders her way to the good doctor's side to offer him what she's poured. "I fully support both of those ideas," she muses, taking a sip of that green fire.

"Sounds like a fine idea to me, love," Gert says, as she hops up onto one of the antique chairs and nestles back against its cushions. Even on a normal chair like this, her legs hardly reach the ground. "And I'll take some whiskey as well, if there's any to spare, dear," she adds to Charity. "Apologies for not bringing much along myself, but I'm not much of a baker-" she wiggles her gloved fingers demonstratively for a moment "-and a party clown's budget doesn't stretch far towards buying extra treats."

She smiles at Nicolas for a moment when he mentions Hitchcock, but settles into a more serious look before speaking again. "Gertrude Wexley, dears," she says. "Call me Gert. Everyone does. These days, I mostly do hospital clowning, but I pick up odd jobs here and there whenever there's a festival in town. Looking forward to seeing New Orleans up close. I hear they know how to push the boat out." A pause. "And probably set it on fire afterwards."

She takes a moment to swallow a macaron whole before adding, "So, as you might guess, haven't got much in the way of pocketbook or other resources to offer. But I creep about o' nights, loveys, and I know things. I chatter. I listen. And if you ever need someone scared out of their skin-" she smiles wide, wide, /wide/ "-I'm your clown."

Stasya gives a very cautious glance at the suspiciously large sub, but sticks to just grabbing a small plate of the desserts before turning to give a smile and nod to the newest Lost. "Well met to you as well. And we can talk after the Autumn festivities, for any official oathing business that might be needed. I'm here for my ties with Autumn, not my Summer crown." Charity's compliment gets a smile and a nod as well, but then Nicolas is asking about progress and she clears her throat with a polite little cough. "Yes, everything's quite healed up." She's certainly standing on the previously injured leg just fine. She listens to Hawthorne's speech quietly, giving an approving nod at the Doctor's suggestion of a library and waits for a few more of the Autumn courtiers to add their skills before adding in her own skills. "Well, most of you already know about my love for Summer's swords, but I am also a witch as well. If any find a need for a curse or talisman... I may be able to assist with crafting that as well. But a shared library does sound useful."

"Oh, good, I didn't miss the introductions. There was a shooting at the liquor store and I got a little delayed." A pause, and he adds, "It wasn't my fault." Nicolas's words draw his attention then and he offers the stranger a smile, then a thoughtful look. "That's an excellent idea. I'll help with it." When Charity looks his way, he chuckles and offers a shrug. "Thanks." He accecpts the drink thankfully, then nods to the wagon, "In case you run out. Or need a bear."

He looks over at Gert as she introduces herself and he smiles. There's genuine admiration in his expression. "And not too bad at advice, either." He glances around, then says, "Jake Ramses. I bought and old plantation and I grow lemon trees. I know a bit about other worlds, and how to get to them. I have a lot of experience finding things that have been lost, or stolen. And know a bit about how fickle luck can be." He looks over at Stasya as she speaks, his expression growing thoughtful.

Cheshire smiles to Hawthorne as she says, "Thank you for the welcome." She offers a nod of agreement to Stasya before she responds, "Of course, after the fesitivities." Slowly she makes her way to some setting to do a mix of movie and observing her fellow Lost. Her small plethora of macaroons now can easily be focused upon, picking up on to take a bit of it as she slowly scans over the room.

Hawthorne munches on a chip as he istens to the other Autumns run down their areas of expertise, and he says "Nice to meet you, Jake. I'd also be willing to help with such an endeavor. My own skills are in divination. Future mostly but not expressly. It can be a little tricky at times, but if you need that sort of thing, I'm not too hard to get ahold of. I'm the current lieutenant of the freehold militia as well, if anyone needs escorts for ventures to do research in the area hedge. Hm." He reaches into an interior pocket in his vest and produces a little notebook with a pencil through the coil, opening it to a page with a list for names, contacts and notes. "Before you all leave, some time this evening, if you could each write down areas of specialty, preferred contact methods and the like, I can get us a little directory to pass around. It's our job to know things. Might as well be organized about knowing who knows things." A slight twist of his mouth.

Charity gives a nod to Gert, and there's a drink poured for her as well. Handed off, before she settles in with her own drink. "Charity Armstrong," she offers, finally offers. "Your resident expert on werewolves, folklore, and a spattering of other things. "

Gert flashes a brief grin at Jake as he introduces himself. "You flatter me, love," she says. "But, truth be told, that's generally what I end up offering. Most of my /unique/ talents aren't ones that I'd expect to talk about in polite company." For a few seconds, the teeth are on full display, but then she closes her mouth and adds, "But I've been around a while. I've seen quite a bit. I can generally offer at least a few pennies' worth of thoughts."

She takes the drink offered from Charity, lifting the glass in a brief salute towards her. "Lovely to meet you, dear," she says. "And cheers." She takes a sip of the whiskey, looks thoughtful for a moment, then swallows and nods approvingly. "Ah, now, that's the stuff," she says brightly. "But yes. If any of you ever need an extra set of eyeballs on a problem, feel free to ring me up. I'm usually about at the community center, these days. I've left my number there as well, in case anyone has any emergency birthday parties."

Nicolas eyes the size of the drink Charity gives him, but he hardly seems surprised. "Thank you," he murmurs to her as he accepts the glass. Gert's fear-inducing smile earns an appreciative look from the Fairest as he takes a first sip of Scotch, then he gives Stays a quick nod, glad to hear his work has turned out satisfactory. And though he hasn't met Jacob before, he can now put a face to name he's heard several times already, and mentally attach the abilities the other man states. Cheshire is then given an expectant look, but after she speaks Nicolas politely moves his gaze to the next person in their rough circle, and he's back to Hawthorne, and then Charity. Given the general interest in the library idea, Nicolas gives a nod. "It seems like we're all generally in favor. I'll see what I can do about getting the ball rolling."

Jacob nods to Hawthorne, "I might take you up on that. I don't now much about divination, or dreams, two things I'm interested in learning more about. My knowledge mostly pertains to doors, to other worlds. I'm happy to share my knowledge about those. As for militia..." He grabs a zombie bear and gives it a squeeze. "I'm not much for hand to hand." He smiles, then, a bit playfully. "But if you ever need an archer, I'm handy with a crossbow."

He looks over at Charity as she introduces himself and grins, "Other things. So mysterious." When Gert speaks, he looks back at her. He nods at the very toothy, terrifying grin, returning it briefly. He nods to Nicolas when he mentions getting the ball rolling. Then, all introduced, he lifts his glass. "To coming home." Ok, they've all been here a while, but they all came home at one point. And he himself seems a little different. Less cocky, perhaps. More thoughtful. Still playful and probably leaving trouble in his wake somewhere, but something's definitely changed. And it's not just the Wyrd slowly driving his sanity away.

When the little notebook makes it's way to her, Stasya will neatly write down her contact information. Phone number prefered as the Wizened and the internet still aren't seeing eye to eye just yet. But as everybody lists their own respective skills, she gives an approving nod. "It seems we have a little smattering of all sorts of specialities."

"I was worried everybody was just going to write down 'jumpscares' and that was all we were going to have to work with." Hawthorne plays it deadpan but his eyes crease slightly at the corners. He chews it over with a bite of his chunk of sandwich, then says "So we're not keeping minutes or anything formal, but does anyone have anything they want to address with everyone, since we've got a sizeable chunk of our roster in one place?"

Charity gives a wide, cheerful grin to Nicolas as the glass is taken. She stays near to the doctor, at least for the moment. "Do let me know what I can do to help, Nicolas love." Jacob's comment on her being mysterious gets a wink, and an amused, "Wrapped in an enigma, darling." She glances towards the screen down the way, one of those lupine ears swivels to catch the various sounds. "Jumpscares are not on my list of specialties. I'm not an ambush predator."

Cheshire was mid chewing on that delicious macaron, just gently shaking her head no, at least for herself. Easily eating another macaron with utter delight as she chews.

"To coming home," Nicolas joins in Jake's toast by lifting his glass and offering eye contact with each of the others before he takes another sip. Then he has to set the glass aside briefly to accept the notepad and pen. After neatly writing out his information, the Fairest hands the pad off to the next person and takes up his liquor once more. "I assume everyone is aware of the investigation into the Butcher Queen and Tumbledown Market?" he offers in response to Hawthorne, just in case someone present has yet to hear of this. Then he glances aside to Charity and gives her a wry sort of smile. "You have been, and continue to be, very helpful. Thank you."

"Oh, well, if we're talking /specialties/," Gert says, grinning so broadly that it looks as though the top of her head is barely staying on. "I'm not /always/ about jumpscares, but I'm quite good at them when I want to be. I do play to type a bit, but at least it's a fun type." Another macaron vanishes from her plate, disappearing forever behind that wall of jagged teeth. "Glad to hear the rest of our little freak show has plenty to offer, though. We can't /all/ be horrendous stereotypes. Takes all the fun out of it. Besides, you can't run a circus with only one act."

She reaches for a napkin and wipes at her lips, then adds, "But really, loves. I'm no soldier - your old Auntie Gert never fights fair if she can help it - but I'm not helpless, either. I do my best work on the edges of things. I creep about, and I watch, and I warn, and if all else fails..." She pauses, then shrugs and continues, airily, "Point is, I'm here to help guard the edges. And speaking of edges-"

She turns to look at Nicolas, one eyebrow lifting as she does so. "Heard about it at the last shindig," she says. "And Mister Glad Rags over here-" a nod to Jake "-filled me in a bit as well. I'm still poking about down around the meat shops, chatting people up, seeing if anything's changed about them lately."

Jacob signs the notebook, as well, leaving a phone number. Burner phones are harder to track than email addresses, right? He laughs at Hawthorne's mention of jumpscares. "Oh, but we aren't all about being scary." He glances at Gert, grinning. Charity's words seem to amuse men and he grins at her as well, albeit in a different way. "I'm not going to be the one to unwrap you. Although I do want to hear the stories when someone tries."

Nicolas joining his toast has him smiling, lifting his glass, then taking a healthy swig. At his question about the Butcher Queen and Tumbledown, he gives a nod."

At Gert's words, he looks back over. "Ah, but there does need to be /some/ jumpscares. To keep the balance. And it's definitely necessary at times, although I'm preaching to the choir so I'll just shut up." He grins at Gert, then looks back at Hawthorne. "Also, before we get /too/ far into the whole Butcher Queen and Tumbledown business, because that'll suck you in, there's something else I wanted to suggest. Meetings like this are good. Great. But we also need a way to keep in touch when we can't all make a meeting. Or somewhere we can /leave/ messages. Perhaps... a Hollow?"

Stasya gives a nod of confirmation when Nicolas asks about the whole Butcher Queen and Tumbledown thing. No surprise there. "It's been a mystery for the longest time. I probably shouldn't be surprised it isn't one that we could unwrap over night." As much as she really would have prefered that. She does have a bit of a smile for Gert. "Let the militia handle any charge. Even so, we still need those watching our edges. Jumpscares in good fun are one thing... nobobdy needs an enemy jumping out at an unprepared side."

Hawthorne gets up long enough to wander over to pour himself a drink so that he won't miss any more toasts, and instead of re-sitting, leans against one of the gazebo posts, the blurry charcoal edges of his body blending a little with the deepening evening with the sun fully gone now, small lights having been kicking on around the shelter, and the high-rise lights of the park. "A hollow could serve for that certainly, or a system of dead drops. Maybe even enlist the aid of some of the staff at the community center for a messaging service. Though I suspect those died out while I was out." He takes a long, quiet sip, the alcohol making the faint glow of the embers deep in the shadowy edges of him stand out more brightly especially with the nightfall. "I'm not especially good at jumping out and scaring people, despite being remarkably good at jumping, and not too bad at scaring people. For some reason, those two just don't mix? Hm. But yes, no need for anyone to endanger themselves unduly. Our volunteer militia is quite willing."

When the notebook makes its way to her, Charity adds her own information in it. Neat, elegant cursive handwriting. She places it down for whomever might need to add theirs next, and glances over to Nicolas. The gleam in her eyes is no good at all. Poor Doctor. "My pleasure, love." Jacob's words earn a soft bark of a laugh, before she dips her head. "The matter of the ButcherQueen and Tumbledown are very easily to fall into and not be able to crawl out of for a while." She grabs a piece of that massive sandwich, and then takes a bite. "I leave the fighting to my wolves."

"I realize most of us have heard the gist of it," Nicolas says when most everyone chimes in about the current mystery, "but we do have some new faces." He glances toward Cheshire here. Then the doctor is quick to latch onto the notion of a Hollow. "I do agree we need one. For the Court at least, if not the entire Freehold. There are the advantages to being in the Hedge but not /in/ the Hedge, as it were. And it would make a relatively safe place for a library." Two ideas in one. Not being particularly intimidating nor looking very combative, it's probably no surprise he doesn't chime in on those areas. Instead Nicolas takes a moment to work on his drink. "I appreciate your enthusiasm," he murmurs to Charity, looking blithely unconcerned for the look the wolf-woman is giving him.

"A proper clown alley would be a wonderful thing," Gert says, nodding her agreement in between swallowing further macarons. "Even if it's not a big one, a place to stash useful books and bobs would be fantastic." She nods towards Stasya, grinning again, and adds, "That's mostly what I do, dearie. I've herded clowns for long enough to be good at keeping an eye out for that sort of thing. I can scare like a champion-" she looks exceptionally proud of that fact "-but I'm mostly here to help keep things organized. Being a proper terror isn't a substitute for a bit of malice aforethought."

A pause, and her eyes drift off towards the distant screen where Psycho is playing. "Sounds as though this crew has its heads screwed on right already, though," she says, sounding a bit distracted. "Which is a nice change from the usual. I'm all for a library, and a Hollow, and handing off phone numbers." She reaches for the notebook as she says it, scribbling down her own name and contact information. "Saves time and trouble later, all of it."

Hawthorne swirls his glass a little and then he asks "The other night, you mentioned perhaps trying to acquire the building in which the Barrux Door is located. What if we used that. Hollow out a Hollow by all means, but positioned in such a way to defend important hedgeways and the like, and with what by all means seems a fairly central asset? Needs polishing, but something to think about. Would give us a certain role in the defense of the city, as well." He then casts his attention out toward the movie going on. "It's starting to ramp up. Anyone else feeling like going and getting a snack?"

Cheshire's phone begins to go off and she curses in French, <<Damnit. Of all the times.>> She then slips to English, "Apologies this is important. I will need to catch up with all of you soon." She begins to reach into her clutch and hand out business cards that read :Fortune Teller & Tarot Card Reader - Madam Nicolette Dubois, to everyone as she departs and is soon off into the night.

Jacob nods to Hawthorne. "Winter are the experts at secret message systems, but there's no reason we can't have one as well. I'll look around, scope out some good loctions while," he nods to Nicolas, "he starts prepping the library. As for the militia, the charge is all theirs. I am happy to provide any back up or doorway assistance as needed. Or simply grant them a little luck." He grins, then glances at Charity and chuckles. "Speaking of wolves, I found one. You should meet her when you get a chance." If she hasn't already - Jacob can't really remember. High Wyrd, damaged Clarity, things get confusing sometimes.

When Nicolas speaks, he looks over at the man and grins. "I like the way you think." He lifts his glass in acknowledgement, then takes another swig before he's standing, moving to set his empty glass on a table. He looks over at Gert as she speaks, smiling. As Hawthorne speaks, he replies, "Or that. Well, I need to get going, put out a fire at home. I'll be in touch. But help yourself to the booze, and the bears." He grins at that, then waves, "I'll see you all soon."

"It's something we're persuing. And if we do purchase the building, would probably need to do something with it anyways, to justify why people might be coming and going through the door," Stasya considers this slowly giving a nod. "It's a possible option, but also the other options merit investigating as well." Her eyes might brighten just a bit on the word investigating. There's also a nod for the mention of feasting. "That might be wise as well." While she'll be sitting out any harvesting over by the actual food. Not her favorite flavor of glamour.

"Yes," Nicolas echoes Gert's point, "eventually we will probably find ourselves in possession of things that are best kept safely locked away." The idea of attaching all this in the same building as the door that leads to Tumbledown gives him a moment of thoughtful pause, after which he reaches no clear conclusion. He bids a quick farewell to Cheshire as she leaves, and then another to Jacob. He sips his drink, startling slightly mid-swallow though not enough to make a mess. Then he glances askance at Charity before he mutters a general apology to the group. "Excuse me one moment." Nicolas steps aside to peer at a small piece of paper he now holds in his hand.

There's a nod to Jacob's words - she hadn't met his wolf - and then a sip of her drink before she glances to the other. "I don't have much experience with things in general, when it comes to, well. Us. But I am glad to know that this group seems to be one devoid of complete fools. And not without ambition." She grins, sharp and wolfish. "I am absolutely famished, come to speak of it. And it's been a while since I've seen this one..."

Hawthorne grins a little bit toward Stasya as she becomes the one who watches the cake while the Autumn changelings all get peckish and go to browse and peruse the various flavors of unease and fear generated in various members of the audience. Bless St. Alfred of Hitchcock, who gave us Suspense. "A museum slash prison of misbegotten magics. With proper forethought, what could go wrong?" He doesn't seem down on the idea at all, but does have some amusement in his voice. "Shall we then?"