Logs:How do you do

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How do you do


Characters: Caelan, Ashton
Date: 2020-05-17
Summary: Two new Changelings have their first meeting.
Disclaimers:

Evening, late evening at that, is a time for curling up in bed and sleeping... for chumps. In a large city like New Orleans, one can't be surprised to find that people are up and about enjoying themselves at all hours of the day. The young(-ish) Darkling known as Ashton could probably have paid the local Changeling Community Center and earlier visit, but he might have gotten sidetracked by some tasty looking meals at a restaurant on the way there. Or two restaurants. It might explain why his sleek black wardrobe (t-shirt, jeans and shoes) smells a bit like jambalaya. Either way, he ends up walking into the common area at somewhat ungodly hour after getting admitted by the staff and stands by the entrance giving the place a long scan with his silvery eyes. "Huh... Lots of cats," the guy could be heard murmuring to himself.

Caelan's presence was oh such a new flavor to the city as well. One that existed long ago only to come back with some extra sugar and spice added in the form of Faerie meddling. But that story was one they all possessed and wore upon their collective sleeves like a purple heart that illustrated their shared hardship. Even so his expression was jubilant behind that tuft of blonde hair that even seemed to cover one of those serpentine eyes of his. Gazing around the room as the gentle heat of the kitchen soothed the cold-blooded changeling much like his own warm mantle only just barely formed. Yellow eyes looking left and right before finding Ashton as he almost danced his way towards him before falling into one of those various couches set about with a gentle sigh. His dress antiquated and dapper in the same moment as she offered a sharp toothed grin. "Heeeeelloooo." His tone melodic and welcoming. "I'm Caelan, and you? That is if I may have it. Your name I mean." He said with a gentle chuckle to himself.

Ashton might have started bending down to pet one of the many cats strutting through the area like little princes and princesses when the other Changeling approved. His fingers reached out, prepared to stroke the back of a fat calico with a missing tail that was twining between his legs, and froze before making contact. Sure, this was an area for the Lost to gather, but Ashton hadn't been prepared for such a quick approach. He'd been there for literally a minute! "Hey," the young guy greeted after straightening from his aborted attempt at feline petting, not that the feline in question seemed to be too offended by it. The darn thing was purring against his black jean-clad ankles. "Sure, assuming that you're asking our of friendliness and not as part of a nefarious plot to haze the newcomer. Name's Ashton. May I have yours, oh mysterious stranger?" He flashed a grin, exposing crystalline teeth that did little to hide the sliver of gray tongue behind them.

Caelan tilted his head and wore a expression of faux offense before replacing it swiftly with a smile that had a single sharp tooth poking over his bottom lip. "Oh but I said it! You must not have heard me out the mewling kittens." He said with a huff then stood up and with a overly dramatic flourish of his hand bowed slightly. Deciding that if he was going to repeat himself it may as well be as formal as possible. "I am Caelan Goodrum, adherent of the Summer and lover of many indulgences and things that would likely kill most people." Said with overt pomp and even lifting that bowler cap on his head before letting it fall back on place on that silken gold hair. "Funny you talk about new guy though." He said a hand upon his own chin. "I just got here recently as well, must've been a clearance in Arcadia."

Ashton tried to hide a wince by turning it into a carefree smile. "Sorry, you know cats. One walks by and it basically demands all your attention." He gave the ground between his feet a pointed look, only to realized that the purring feline was no longer there. The young Darkling might have muttered a hushed "traitor" before returning his attention to the dapper individual before him. Formality required reciprocation, so Ashton placed his left palm over his right fist and dipped forward in a shallow bow. "This humble seeker of knowledge is delighted to make your acquaintance Sir Caelan Goodrum. I am not an adherent of Summer like yourself, but I am an ardent member of the sister season of Spring. Nevertheless, I consider myself an adequate practitioner of the martial skills that your Court reveres and look forward to working in tandem with your in any worthy future causes." He straightened and likewise switched to a more normal tone. "Well, I'm actually just from out of state, but a clearance in Arcadia would be a welcome explanation at any time."

Caelan gave a spirited joyful laugh at that, his mouth opening a bit too wide as if those slits on the edge of his lips threatened to opened far too wide like an abyss that one could gaze into and feel it look back. So out of place on those delicate features of Caelan to be sure. But that was the lingering fae influence on his elegant form. "Spring? Hmmm hmmm. You know I felt like I almost ended up there too myself, it really was on a razors edge. But in the end my desires I guess pushed me in one direction over another." That made him thoughtful for a brief moment as if to question if he was the one that made that decision. "Oh ya? Where did you come from? I spent some time in Mississippi when I was little but most of it's been here in Louisiana. Unless you count the Riven Demons demesne." He ended in a grim note.

Ashton chuckled softly and spread his hands to the side for a moment before tucking them into his jeans' pockets. The sound of tiny translucent scales rubbing against rough denim was subtle, but detectable to the observant. "I definitely know how that's like. I almost ended up joining Autumn myself, but decided that it wasn't quite the right fit for me. Asher - he's my Fetch - was ever so disappointed that I went a different route after all the effort he committed to steering me in that direction." His pale lips twisted into a self-satisfied smirk, though one without even a hint of malice in it. "This is actually my first time in Louisiana, much less New Orleans. I'm all the way from the other end of the country, if you're looking at it from the north-to-south aspect. New York City born and raised, and thankfully returned to it after the obvious complications. So you're basically a local? I did hear that it wasn't possible to directly enter New Orleans until recently, but Louisiana itself's a big place. You know anything about that?"

Caelan listened to Ashtons story about the past though when he arrived at more recent events the young Fairest seemed concerned and shook his head. "Oh no, I only just escaped recently. Maybe whatever closed the city off is part of what made it so hard for me to get out of Arcadia. That's curious." He said and fell backwards onto the couch again as he thought it over. "You talked to your fetch? What was that like? I only recently watched mine with my family. It was... Strange. I haven't even considered approaching them. I figured it would set off alarms." He said obviously having no other words to properly describe the experience.

Ashton didn't join Caelan on the couch, but he did lean a hip against it and splayed an elbow across the backrest. "Yeah, I'm given to understand that my situation's kind of unique or at least uncommon. Not everyone gets along with their Fetch, but Asher and I are like... not twins. We're definitely not that, but maybe... siblings? A disfunctional pair maybe." His shoulders lifted in a shrug. "The short of it is that yes, it's strange to interact with one's Fetch, especially the first few times. The first time I did was actually when I broke into his mansion with full intent to give him a good stabbing for stealing my life. The next thing I know, I was sitting down at the kitchen table with Asher and his husband getting fed force feed homemade cookies. We spoke about the state of things, I was convinced not to commit murder and pointed towards the local Freehold. Turned out that Asher was a provisionary member of the Autumn Court for rendering services that he wouldn't tell me about." The Darkling paused. "Oh, there might also have been some crying involved." A slender gray-skinned hand lifted and made a wagging motion, as if to downplay the severity of that last statement.

Caelan seemed somewhat disturbed by something that Ashton had said. It was almost as if that radiant sun that was his vibrant nature turned a little dark as those yellow serpents eyes seemed to look off somewhere as if at some unseen prey before he looked up towards Ash as he leaned against the couch. "Wait, it was aware of what it is and even interacted with those like us? That's... Does it have access to Faerie magic too? I got the distinct impression from what I saw of mine that it was unaware of it's existence beyond being human. Unless it's hiding that from me very well." He said as if growing more suspicious of his own Fetch. "I know the Fetch's are not the ones that did this to us, but I'm still surprised you were able to show it that mercy. I often ponder my revenge even so soon after my escape. I bet it tastes like a prime rib roast." He said licking his lips slightly with a tongue that was almost snake-like.

Ashton eyed the lip licking, but didn't seem particular disturbed by it on the whole. Caelan's questioning simply caused the Darkling to lift his slender shoulders in another shrug. "He was aware and he was able to do a bit of magic, though nothing as powerful as most Contracts. Like I said, this is probably a special case. I wasn't exactly a vanilla human being before my adventure and Asher is a version of who I was, so it sounded like he went poking around where he shouldn't have and found out more about himself than he wanted... Namely that he wasn't so much flesh and blood as a less than 5-year-old puppet made of red string and paper cutouts." Ashton's nose wrinkled slightly. "Plus, his husband's a bit of an occult enthusiast and practitioner. The guy has a bit of the asshole streak in him and is way prettier than I want to admit, but also extremely sharp." He shook his head, sending his misty hair billowing all over in a stormy halo before settling back into a more manageable form. "Are you sure your Fetch is edible? Asher would have given me indigestion if I tried to munch on him."

Caelan gained a certain glint to his eye. "Oh anything and anyone is edible. Though tastes are distinct for each." He then blinked slightly as if to snap out of whatever part of him seemed to have been present for that. "But I try not to fall back onto my Arcadian nature if I can avoid it. That part of me couldn't ever be sated even if I tried. Besides regular food tastes good enough." His expression approaching the bashful as if somewhat embarrassed that he had that cannibalistic nostalgia from his durance. "But you're probably right, I had no idea about any of this when I was taken. So I don't see why my fetch would." Saying that out loud seemed to calm his previously rash assumption and paranoia. "You said another freehold is watching yours? That's good, who knows what we can trust of things made by them. I wouldn't be surprised if they had some unconscious way to alerting those who hunt us."

Ashton shifted uncomfortably and the hand it was resting on the couch's backrest tightened slightly on the fabric. "Yeah, that's always a problem. You never know what surprises those bastards left behind when they wove their little decoys into being. Asher's being watched very closely because of that, but there's apparently protections in place to reduce the chance of a nasty surprise. And if there was one, it'd be involuntary I assure you. Asher and I are both of the same mind about Them and where they can stick Themselves." His expression suddenly shifted. One corner of his lips lifted into a snarl and the tiny characters etched into his nearly invisible scales glowed briefly with frozen white fire for a split second before subsiding. "Dangers aside, I'd fuck up anyone who tried to touch Asher without a good justification. He's the only family I have left these days, to the extent that I can use that term."

Caelan chuckled softly. "What a thing to say, but then I guess you two do have a lot in common. It's hard to know just whose watching at any one moment. After all some of our Keepers probably don't even notice were gone while others feverishly search and send our their minions to take back what they think is theirs. Consistency certainly isn't something we get to enjoy. But that keeps things interesting I guess, right?" He said with a sly smile upwards. "It's weird that yours feels so much, has so much free will. I half expected them to go body snatchers all screaming and pointing at they try to drag us back to Arcadia. Makes you wonder just how hastily they make them."

Ashton relaxed his expression back into a composed mask, but the set of his shoulders remained visibly tense. "Sorry, I tend to get worked up when this subject is broached. I'm still new to the whole thing and it's on my mind a lot." The guy shook his head slightly from side to side, as if the physical action would also toss free the mental baggage that resided inside his head. "Yeah, I'm definitely not advocating letting all Fetches be. That won't be wise. But I'm no longer consumed by the murder hobo mentality either, not after those first few weeks. I just want to live my life, enjoy myself and handle problems as they arise. If you find any Fetches obviously fit with nasty security protocols or surveillance orders, feel free to get rid of the problem."

Caelan hopped up again. "Yea, probably should. Maybe there's a way to tell, we could get some Winter and Autumn people on it? Don't they love mysteries? If we had some way to tell if a fetch or human for that matter was Fae low-jacked that'd be great. Oh well, all this talk about murder and food has me hungry. I'm gonna go get some food. Or whatever passes for food in the middle of the night." He said with a sharp toothed grin once more. "It was nice meeting you, I'm sure I'll see you again soon. Hopefully we can find something to kill or eat together." He said with a playful wink.

Ashton flashed Caelan a sharp grin and smoothly slide backwards away from the couch to give the other Changeling another palm-to-fist bows. "Likewise, it was nice meeting you. This wasn't the conversation I thought I'd have with the very first person of our kind I come upon in New Orleans, but it was interesting nevertheless. And interesting is always better than boring, am I right? Nevermind the supposed curse that my ancestors came up with about interesting lives." A pupil-less silver eye brief in a returning wink. "I'm sure we'll meet ago over at least one of those things. For now, I'm going to poke around a bit more before I head back to the hotel for some shut-eye. Good night, Sir Caelan Goodrum of the Summer Court."