Logs:Perilloux's Home for Wayward Monsters

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Perilloux's Home for Wayward Monsters

Characters: Felipe and Jeunesse
Date: 2020-02-11
Summary: Felipe introduces Jeunesse to Elysium, and Jeunesse introduces Felipe to Big Ideas.
Disclaimers: {{{disclaimers}}}

"Welcome to one of the only basements in the city," Felipe says, opening the door for Jeunesse before walking further in. He looks around, and jerks his thumb at the auditorium seating. "That's where the oligarchs of the All-Night Society around here raise their voices at each other. See the seating situation? How do so many immortal monsters manage peak in high school?"

Jeunesse stops at the bottom of the staircase, her fingers lingering on the rail, tapping it gently. One foot remains on the last step, but the other is still on the ground. She looks slowly around the massive room with wide, dark eyes. "Oh," she says softly, at first, and then nothing for several beats. "It's like Hogwarts, she says. Look--" she points with her other hand, her finger just a little too long, toward the symbols, "We would never be allowed to sit together."

Felipe chuckles. "Yeah. Meetings suck, anyway. Doesn't matter too much, does it?" He walks out into the center of the room, looking around. "You ever walk down all of Milan Street? From Tchopitoulas, all the way north to Central City? The wealth and power disparity in this town is massive, and that carries over to us Kindred. In one corner, the Triumvirate, we got the bougie reactionary old-money Invictus, the Longinian Curia, and the Ordo Dracul nerds. Then there's what you'd call my corner, or what's left of it: some scattered Movement kids and whichever Acolytes still live in the bayou. The Triumvirate Covenants run this city without meaningful opposition. At least they leave me alone, which suits me fine. You have any Church connections right now, Jeunesse?"

"Not in this room, just with the kine," Jeunesse answers absently, still peering around the room. She finally lets go of the staircase and begins to wander in--but instead of heading to the center of the room, as Felipe does, she begins to skirt the edges, sliding her fingers lightly along the walls as she does. Sometimes she turns her back to him to study said walls, sometimes she watches him peripherally while she explores the rest of the room. "Just where I can keep to purpose. I think it is more complicated within the Lance than that, but I am listening. I believe your experience."

"Yeah, I'll take your word about the Church's internal affairs," Felipe replies. He strolls up to the stage and leans against the side, pressing into a patch of shadows. "I haven't been around that long. All of this seems like so much weight from the past looming down on me. The past of other monsters. I bet it was worse back in Europe though, wasn't it?" <Pose Order> It is your turn to pose. Beep!

"Yes, I think so." Jeunesse stops at the seating assigned to the Movement and the Witches. Specifically she stops to study the symbol indicating the Movement, turning away from Felipe again to do so. "I was not really involved like /he/ was. I played a very specific role," she says, her voice trailing slightly, "I did a job for him. It didn't leave me a lot of opportunity to get a feel for what was happening on the outside." She lifts her hand to her face, settling her fore and middle fingers against her lower lip. "But from what I did learn, yes--it's much worse. There is no love for the Movement in Paris. Even less for the Witches."

"I don't really get the Circle of the Crone, to be honest," Felipe murmurs. He looks to Jeunesse while she's turned away, gaze affixed on her off-putting features. Even in this safe place, something about her seems to inspire wariness in him. "Using all that Vitae on blood magic makes me nervous. I've never seen a Cruac rite either, but what I've heard doesn't really warm me up to the prospect. As for the Movement, well. I sometimes wonder what it really is and means, outside of opposition to the Invictus and the status quo they uphold. We're held down by the burden of choice, though. That much is certain. When you stop just going along with the same old aristocratic power games, you have to decide what you want to do instead. Guess that's what happens when you're labeled as the opposition for all time."

Jeunesse bobs her head slowly, listening while Felipe speaks. Eventually she turns around, or at least halfway, and looks over her shoulder at him. Her fingers remain resting on her lower lip as she speaks, as if she forget they were resting there. "They--they--I don't have as strong feelings as some believers about them, because I don't think they're entirely off-base. They fulfill purpose. They have that right, and maybe that's the most important thing." She smiles, just slightly, but immediately covers it with her whole hand before she turns back to study the symbol. "Existing as opposition must feel somewhat hollow. I always enjoyed my discussions with y'all the best. Over there, I mean--you're the only one I've met here--and I think y'all have a lot more in common with us than sometimes you realize." She looks back again, her hand still hiding her mouth, but her smile touching her eyes, which crinkle at the edges. "The Witches, the--what did you say?--nerds--they've forgotten to care about where they came from. They've invented purpose, but they leave the breathing behind in it--but we're of them, aren't we? That's what you know. That's what I always loved about y'all."

Felipe listens in turn. "I see what you're saying about the Acolytes. Your attitude seems a whole lot more workable than the murderous frothing I've heard goes on in the Church, if mostly behind closed doors. But it's like you said, right? We Kindred can dream up our share of violence." He closes his eyes, turning his gaze down to his shoes. "Yeah, that's the thing, right? We were once human. Meaning we repeat the same mistakes humans make, too. We think with human minds, though the Beast is doing its best to break in. Is it any surprise that we bring human conflicts into our nights?" He shrugs, and looks back up. "I don't know much about the Lancea et Sanctum, either. I just know enough to look past misconceptions: that you're not Catholic or even really Christian, just sorta adjacent, right? That, and y'all carry forward some of the oldest conceptions on what it means to be a vampire in the first place. For better or worse."

Jeunesse lowers her gaze to the nearest chair--one of those marked specifically for members of the Carthian Movement. She turns around and settles down into it, resting her elbows on the armrests and crossing one leg over the other, after which she begins a slow bounce of her foot, swinging it up and down. The tilts her head to the side and then gazes up toward the ceiling. "We're all monsters. We're all...murderous frothers and some mix of Kine-mind and Beast-mind. We're all...chosen." She continues to watch the ceiling and her lips part, and this time she seems to forget to cover her mouth, and if one were to look closely enough, they might note that she is missing several teeth. "Catholics are Christians. They're just not Protestants. And Muslims and Jews all worship the same God. Even Hindus agree that God is the same God. We agree with that. Everyone dreams of God in different ways, I suppose. But we all dream him, or she, or they as something capable of curses and bloody violence. And He is--and we are--right?"

"Yeah," Felipe replies, softly. He follows to the Carthian section, extending an arm so he can lean on the back of a seat while standing upright. "That's right, I think I remember. That's the rap, isn't it? God created vampires to test humans. We get a special role to play in visiting holy fear on humanity, which includes drinking their blood. The price of sin. That one sticks in a lot of craws, you know? Seems like a lot of us spend a lot of time and hand-wringing energy wondering why God did this to us. When someone comes along and says they have the reason why, they'll at least get some attention for a minute, right?"

Her eyes shift from the ceiling to follow him as he moves, settling on him when he leans up against the chair. She is quiet for a moment, considering. She still seems to have forgotten to cover her mouth. "I don't care for judging anyone who struggles to believe. It's a lot easier to believe in a God of blessings than one of curses, but here we are." She turns her hands over, spreading them slowly, curling her long fingers in toward her palms like dead spiders. "Here we are. Living, or dead curses--the...nerds...they perplex me the most, but I suppose I understand. If you look at your curse without context, and that is all it is, wouldn't you want to relieve yourself of it? It's just..." she shakes her head then, lowering her eyes and lifting her hands to sift her fingers through her hair, briefly pressing it against her skull before it fluffs out again. "I didn't mean to get on it. I know not everyone likes that."

"Nah, speak your mind," Felipe replies. "We're here, aren't we? Besides, I kind of started down this path. Up to you if you want to walk with me down it." His gaze avoids Jeun's face while her mouth is open. "I don't even know what the Ordo wants. I don't care, either." He looks over at the Lancea et Sanctum symbol on the wall. "I don't know that I have time for purpose right now, other than what I already have. Just... trying to get stronger, keep my head down, keep bettering myself. Maybe find some others who aren't assholes to watch my back. I'll leave the power plays to the ones deeper into the game than me."

Jeun smiles then--just with her lips--but closes them in doing so, and settles her dark eyes on Felipe as he looks away. "Survival is easier in numbers. Is that why you want to get strong, Felipe? To help you to survive? What's that whole," she lifts her hand, waving her spidery fingers around in a circle, "whole pyramid of needs thing--survival comes first. Faith comes a lot later, I mean, according to that." She sits up a little higher in her chair, leaning toward him and searching his face, and then his clothes, "Did I tell you I grew up in an orphanage--in Viavante--and I thought, what if I built an orphanage for Dead Things?"

"Some people can't seem to get by without faith, either," Felipe admits. "Can't be that different in us. Still, survival sounds good to me." He listens to Jeunesse's proposal, and looks intrigued. "What do you mean, dead things? Like the Kindred? A home for runaway blood-drinkers?"

"Sure? Why not?" She leans up, glances to the right and then the left before looking back at Felipe and meeting his eyes. "I mean, there's tradition. The right way. The way things have always been done, handed down from Elder to Childe, from the Invictus and those that came before them. Your Sire teaches you the way--but aren't our nights full of those who have lost their Sires, and aren't they full of Sires who teach poorly? Wouldn't it make sense--" she laughs then, low and raspy, in a way that does not match her otherwise soft voice, "--Jeunesse Perilloux's Home for Wayward Monsters."

Felipe thinks about it for a minute. "From a practical standpoint, it makes sense. Catching new blood before they do something stupid is good insurance. I also doubt there are many areas that can support something like this outside of New Orleans for some distance away. Find a nice little fold for those baby ticks to settle in, and we could make a difference around here. I might even be able to get us help, sometimes. If my Sire agrees."

"Some won't like it," Jeunesse gazes toward the symbol across the aisle which represents the First Estate. "And so it won't be exactly keeping your head down, Felipe. But, you know, the way I see it, it's the right thing to do." She flickers her fingers in that direction, but looks back at him, "Tradition is loved because it has worked before--but it cracks under the pressure of the rest of the world moving by, and sometimes adaptation is more important than traditions. And in a lot of ways it's a service to the First Tradition--and a response to the Second, picking up where it's broken. You know? Spin it that way--that's how you make them fall in love." She pauses, "Would she not agree?"

"You can talk to the Invictus," Felipe tells Jeunesse. "I don't really want to talk to them. I don't need credit from the Establishment, either. I can put some funds your way, help set up a defensible spot somewhere. What would you have these baby bats doing while they stay with us, anyway?"

Jeun laughs again, like a wirebrush rattling around inside of a glass. "I'll talk to them--it's less about credit, and more about making sure they don't decide they need to fuck with it. You convince them it's a benefit to their society and they're less likely to bring the hammer down on you because someone got a crick in their centuries old neck about threats to their safety or routine. That's all." She uncrosses her legs, recrossing them in the opposite direction. She tucks the hem of her dress down around her knees. "You know--whatever they're supposed to be doing normally. Learning to be smart. Learning to blend in. Learning to hunt without ending up being the hunted. The basics. Give them a chance at survival."

"I guess they won't be happy with a Firebrand prole like me putting ideas in the heads of young'uns," Felipe replies. "You're right, though: they can be convinced to stop caring. Then, who knows? Maybe we can really benefit All-Night Society. Show them there's more to this than feeling sorry for yourself. I can't say the Movement doesn't win from this either, if we play our cards right. Sounds like the kind of idea that'd make waves in this city. Thought of a place yet?"

Jeun stares into the middle distance then, nodding slowly. "I have. I've thought of it. I've been thinking about it. And--honestly, you'd be perfect to be able to speak to the youngest of us. It's a lot harder for the rest of us to connect--well, I mean. I'm young, but in general, it's easier for you. You can speak to them on the level. I don't see anything wrong with that, as long as we float everything we teach with the reminder that they get to decide for themselves. And they do. That's important. We're shepherds, but not over the rest of the Damned." She pauses then, refocusing to look at him, "And I know you and yours can get behind free will."

"We sure do get behind free will," Felipe replies. "The Perilloux Home for Wayward Monsters, huh? Wonder how we're gonna fuck this one up, you know? Guess we'll find out." He chuckles wryly. "About all the time I have in here, though: my next shift starts in half an hour. Gotta get on up there. Take it easy, Jeunesse. Stay safe." With that, he heads for the door, and after getting past security, he's gone.