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Seraph Ryou, or Requiem as he went by in the supernatural underworld was waiting to see Kerrigan E. Harlow. He had never done this before, he didn't even know if any past shadow hunters had done this before. Tell the mayor that, hey, by the way, magic is totally real and there are literal monsters on the street that can kill people. Also there's a gang of humans who have band together to annihilate them from society. Also also there are good monsters who try to keep this all on the down low and preserve the secrecy of supernatural races. Just saying.
None of that seemed like an easy task, let alone a task that would be easy to convince someone of and keep them from getting scarred for life. But Mayor Harlow seemed to come off with a spitfire attitude that he could admire and hopefully she could get behind this. Or maybe she'd be a monster sympathizer and be his new nemesis, who knew. Either way, he sat out in the waiting room. By day he looked, just as how he should, an FBI agent. Suit and tie, only thing off was his longish straight black hair that just stopped above his shoulders. His nails drummed lightly against the armrest, or maybe this was one of those offices where they tell you you'll see the mayor and you never did. He was really relying on the fact that his FBI status would allow him to see her.
It was rare for Kerrigan to have an unexpected visitor, which meant that when she got the call that someone who hadn't been on her daily agenda of meetings was here to speak with her, she had immediately registered it as odd. It registered to her as even more odd that the individual had flashed a badge at the young woman working at the front desk. If it was irregular that she had visitors, it was even more irregular when the visitors had federal badges. It made a part of her uneasy. Federal agents seldom came bearing good news, from what she had come to know about them in the four months since the special election that had put her in control of the city. With that in mind, she had told Willa, her assistant, to clear her schedule for the next few hours. Willa was often stuck doing things like that, things that Kerrigan herself didn't feel like doing. Once her morning meetings had been successfully rescheduled, the mayor let out a sigh. It's now or never, Harlow, she mused to herself, before exiting the executive office of New York City.
On a normal day, she would have had Willa also bring the man to her room, but there was an urgency that she couldn't explain that hovered around her. It seemed only proper, then, for it to be her that came out to greet the man. For those that didn't know her, didn't recognize her flame colored hair, she was quite unsuspecting. Many would expect that it was she who was the assistant. Still, there was something about how she held herself that was... elevated. That particular day, she wore what could be expected of any individual at the office: a navy blue skirt and jacket, over an, of course, floral button up. Her hair was pulled into a donut bun, two pieces left hanging to frame her face. Today, she wore her thick framed glasses, which was unusual; normally she opted for contact lenses. Together, the look came together to make her seem like someone who belonged at the mayoral office, but still made her unsuspecting as the actual mayor. She liked it that way; it was always entertaining to her to see new guests to the mayor's office look around for someone who couldn't pass as an intern. Of course, many knew her face, but look that she preferred on casual days at the office was much different than the Kerrigan she presented for press conferences.
She reached the lobby with a simple nod to Averette, the woman at the front desk. She then looked down at the file in her hand, then glanced to the waiting room. Of course, there was only one individual waiting. There were multiple waiting rooms in the executive offices, and those who made it this far were the ones that had been cleared as individuals who needed to speak to Kerrigan herself, instead of a lower ranking official.
"Mr. Ryou, is it?" she called to the man after taking a moment to study him. "I hope I didn't mispronounce that." She knew that she hadn't. "I hope you haven't been waiting too long, and that you're wait has been comfortable. Do you need anything before we head into the office? It's ready for you now."
Would he clock her immediately as the Kerrigan E. Harlow? Only time will tell, she mused, her gaze flashing slightly with amusement.
"Of course," He said politely, getting up to follow her. His voice was unique, it didn't carry a New York accent, in fact while it wasn't a thick accent by any means it sounded almost old timey. A soft sort of accent that wasn't even used anymore. It was hard to place though.
He knew she was a new mayor and if he wasn't such a stalker he probably would have never guessed this was Ms. Harlow, in fact he knew he definitely wouldn't have guessed it even if she wore a pin that said, "I'm The New Mayor." She looked too young, didn't really fit how he would imagine a mayor to look like, not even close to the right attitude, heck he would have never guessed a mayor in New York City would ever be female, she was the first, but at the same time it was also refreshing.
Seraph followed her into her office with his black leather messenger bag. Once inside he took one last longing look at the door, he had time. He could just tell her about one of the many random murder cases or psychos running loose in the city and leave. He didn't have to do this to his reputation, but by some miracle with his conscience in tact he walked over to her desk and sat down.
"There's been some concerning footage we wanted to make you aware of, privately. For your eyes only," Seraph said taking out his laptop and opening it up to the video he already had set up. Again, there was another hesitant moment, do you really want to do this to yourself? Are you really capable enough to handle whatever her reaction is? But she deserved a chance to know that he never gave the other mayors a shot for.
He played the footage spinning the computer around for her to see, just barely able to lean back in his seat. The footage was more like a video montage displaying multiple instances of supernatural power. One of the highlights was an army of stuff animals taking over an arcade at night, all seemingly alive. One piece of footage that kept showing up was one of a girl with long blond hair that kept ripping lamp posts out from the ground and throwing them at people. She was probably the most believable one, lamp posts seemingly went missing or wound up in weird places, blog sites had been made about it, but every time footage was requested the stores always claimed it was missing, yet Seraph obtained it. When the footage ended Seraph turned the laptop back around shutting it with a nervous expression that, at this point he couldn't hide, "So, what do you think?" He asked anxiously. More anxiously cause he could guess what she was thinking, it was a nice film project with good special effects, good joke. If she really felt that way he'd have to show her...
She could tell by the way that he looked at her that he knew who she was. Yet, despite recognizing her, she could also see that she still was surprised that she was the one that ran the city. They always were. After all, the next youngest mayor of the city had nearly half a decade on her. At first, it seemed that both her youth and gender were going to be problems, at least for some. Kerrigan Harlow was nothing if not a charasmatic leader, though, a strategist who knew just who to talk to to make it so her transition into authority relatively easy. She considered this as they walked to her office. She slid in the door effortlessly, and any doubt that she was the mayor was gone. The way she moved through her office, which was large and well furnished, the way that she waltzed right to the other side of the desk, it was clear that this space was hers. Yet, despite the possessiveness in her form, her demeanor had not changed. She didn't suddenly become more or less formal, and the twitched-lips smile never left her face. She was still warm, at least on the surface. Deeper analysis of the woman might suggest otherwise, but on the surface, she was at least trustable.
"Make yourself comfortable," she invited him as she herself perched on the corner of her desk. Of course, there were plenty of real places she could have opted to sit. There was the chair that sat behind her desk, a few office chairs scattered around the room, and a lounge chair by the window for when she needed to get heavy reading done or she stayed the night at the office. Arguably, all of these places would have been a better place for the mayor to sit, and on most occassions when she had important guests, she would have picked any other place. For whatever reason, Kerrigan chose to sit on the corner of her desk, though, the way she often did when her meetings were more casual. It was perhaps the youth in her that drew her to such. She crossed her right leg on her left, before tilting her head.
"What brings you in, Mr. Ryou?" she asked as he looked one last time towards her door. He wasn't going to waste his time, was he?
When he answered her, she let out a sigh that she couldn't quite contain. What did he mean there was footage only for her eyes? In the city, there were a million better people to give police footage to. Did she need to make a call to her "friends" - Kerrigan was hesitant to call police friends - down the road? Yet she let her eyes drift intently to the screen. When the stuffed animals came across, her left eyebrow raised. Was this really what she had canceled her morning brunch for?
"Mr. Ryou, are you purposely wasting my time?" Frustration sounded in her voice as she spoke before the girl came onto the screen. This one was different. It looked a little more believable, but Kerrigan was not illogical. She was now curious as to what he had to say, but it was going to take far more than some special effects to make Kerrigan believe that this was anything. Still, there was something nagging at her that just maybe...
As the video concluded, she clasped her hands together. Impatience fought curiosity as the most evident in her gaze.
"I think I need a bit of an explanation why you thought this... film trick was something that first needed to come to my office and second needed to only be seen by me."
Seraph gave a sheepish look that he couldn't resist giving. Of course, any respectable person would deny it of being real without some more proof. In his case some physical, right before your eyes proof. Technology like photoshop, any filming making program tended to make things difficult on proving what was supernatural and what wasn't. He always thought technology would make things easy, better, but instead it was a pain in his neck. Biting back the despair he felt, he reached into his bag again, "I suppose there's another piece of evidence."
He was about to take out something scaly, seafoam like when he paused and looked down at his phone, "Actually, this might be better, there's a case I need to tend to relating to those instances. If you come with me you can see your yourself and if I wasted your time I'll owe you one. It's not that bad of a deal to have someone like me owing you one."
Seraph picked up his bag and looked back at her, in all honesty he had to do something to make her believe before he left and if she didn't come with him he was going to have to find another way to convince her. Otherwise he would leave and she would never let him back in her office again after this.
"We could catch whoever has been vandalizing the city, even if you don't believe in what you saw on the videos, it can't look bad for the mayor to show up in the news as taking action and finding the vandal," He tempted with a rictus grin.
“Another piece of evidence, perhaps a better one?” she asked with a single manicured brow still raised. She moved her arms to lean backwards, her foot tapping the corner. Despite the fact that this was all fake, she was not quite ready to tell him to leave the office, at least not yet. After all, he was intriguing. What kind of FBI agent tried something like this? None that she was aware of, at least. Which meant there had to be something about him that merited at least considering. But what if he’s not even a real agent? Was his badge checked? She realized with a blink that she hadn’t confirmed this when she moved around her schedule. What if she was sitting across from someone who was angry the city got their first woman mayor?
“Come with you on a case?” Now that seemed fishy. From her months in office, she had learned that the FBI didn’t tend to enjoy guests. “I’ll need to verify some identification before I leave anywhere with you,” she replied with a tilt of her chin. “Nothing personal, I’d just prefer not to be shot the moment we leave guarded custody.” Her lips twitched into a half-smile; she spoke so cavalierly that a normal person would perhaps be more than a bit confused.
A deal to have an agent owing her something didn’t seem like a bad one, either…
“I’ll go with you upon verification, and on one condition.” Her expression softened a bit. “We stop and get an iced coffee before. If I’m going to be trapezing across the city for a publicity stunt to find a monster,” she scoffed at the word, “I’ll need caffeine first.” She stood from her desk, the look on her face expectant. What was she getting herself into? It seemed like only time could tell.
(I was busy with school like, "Oh I better wait to reply." And now that I did I'm like, "Oh wow, my reply was always going to be short" xD)
"I don't mind," Seraph assured taking out his badge, he took out a small wet wipe from the brief cage cleaning it off for her before handing it over to Kerrigan. Normally he wouldn't just hand the badge over, but considering she was the mayor he didn't really mind. He closed his brief case, a small curve of his lip could have been considered a half smile, but it was so small it was hard to tell, "Yeah sure," He said casually before correcting himself, "I mean, of course, wherever you want to go we can stop by so long as it's not too far out of the way. Wouldn't want you missing the chaos."
The badge was in nice shape as it should be with no abbreviations and looked like the real thing. Seraph slid across to her an ID, "You should also ask for identification with it, just for future reference. I could literally buy a replica of this badge on Amazon if I wanted to."
(honestly mood. it'll be easier in a minute. maybe something can happen that cancels their coffee trip or like we can just skip that part?)
“Bold of you to think I don’t know how to spot a fake,” she murmured with a wink. She sounded not-so-mayoral in that moment, but beneath all of the Mayor Harlow, there still was a normal human in there, one with a twenty-six year old’s sense of humor. She glanced down at the badge, before shrugging. “I also had asked for identification, not necessarily the badge itself,” she then commented, her eyes focused with strict scrutiny. It seemed real enough, which made this situation even stranger to her. She let out a sigh, before leaving the seat she had taken on the desk.
She then rolled her shoulders and moved towards the door. “It is mildly concerning to me, though, that such fakes are possible with just a mere Amazon search,” she mused, leaving her office. “But, alas, I don’t have jurisdiction over you… people.”
They moved through the mayoral office quickly. “I’ll be back… when I’m back. If someone comes to see me, take a message for me doll,” she called to the front desk worker, knocking on the desk. And then, as soon as she said it, they were off.
“Do you normally take your girls to a scene of some sort of chaos on the first date?” she asked, her demeanor shifting slightly as soon as she exited the office. She was more relaxed outside of the office, mostly because she had to be ready for anything when she was acting as mayor, and not just acting as Kerrigan. Of course, the answer to hus question was null and void. It wasn’t uncommon knowledge that she wasn’t… interested in people like him. Oh, well.
He smiled almost shyly at her sly demeanor before slipping the badge and identification away and almost opened the door for her, but she had made it there first. Seraph walked outside when he heard her question and felt his face turn hot, "Uh, yeah actually, I usually do. Guess you got me there, but sorry to say I do this for everyone I meet," Seraph smirked. Though in his head wondered if she always flirted this much, he knew he was easy target when it came to making him blush, there was no self control on it.
He walked over to the passenger side of his car opening the door for her this time and getting in on the other side. When he put the car in drive a flash of white passed by the car. For a moment it was out of sight. Suddenly there was a shake on the hood of the car and there staring them down with dark as forest green eyes was a massive white wolf. It didn't entirely look like a wolf though, Its head was triangular and eyes were more like pools of dark ivy green water than physically shaped. Attached to its shoulder were golden ribbon like feelers. The wolves white fur seemed to permeate its own golden glow as well.
Seraph rolled down his window only an inch, "What do you want?"
The wolf lied down on the front of the hood, relaxing for a moment before opening its jaws and speaking, "Personally? I want a sandwich, what I wanted to tell you was that Phantom's possessed 14 people to his hive while you've been chatting it up in there."
She licked at her lips, "Hey mayor, big fan."
"Oh really, what's her name?" Seraph asked.
"Uhhh. It's. Cary. Yup. Cary Marshmallow," She gave a wolfish smile before jumping off the hood of his car and rising up into a human form. She wore skinny black leather moto zipper pants, a grey tank top, dark green hoodie vest and an above the hips black leather jacket with combat heel boots. Her fingertips glided through her dark cinnamon auburn beach wavy hair letting it fall over her shoulders like magma, she turned her head once to look through the car window and winked at Kerrigan, "Good luck with the old man, Firefly."
She patted the car once with her hand before turning on her heels and walking out.
A smile twitched across her lips slowly as she watched him blush. How interesting.
"Well, damn, I thought I was special," she hummed in response, watching his body language very carefully. It was important to her that as quickly as she could, she needed to understand this man. She needed to learn to read him like he was as familiar to her as the palm of her own hand. If what he had said to her was true, and deep in her gut she feared that he wasn't a liar, she needed to figure out what made him tick, what his motives were. She needed to learn how he reacted, the way he held himself. There was some entertainment in that, finding a new project and being able to capitalize on it. But the entertainment came with something darker, a hesitance, one spawned by the fact that, if she was intelligent, she needed to get out, and get out now. Ignorance was bliss, and she was about to lose hers.
It was then that she was distracted by the sound of the creature on the hood. An instinct told her to duck, but she fought it simply because of the abject horror that crossed her eyes. "What the fuck is that?" The words came out of her mouth quickly before she could stop them, and she found her hand trailing to her lips as if to quiet herself.
There was a hint of panic in her gaze, one that was mostly covered by a deep denial. This had to be a dream, or a bad trip, perhaps both. Had she let someone else mix her coffee this morning? She didn't think so, but this... this couldn't be happening. There was a wolf-thing-creature on the hood of a car, talking. That was almost enough to cause hysteria to enter the mayors head. She was better than that, though, and instead, her hand dropped to pinch her own thigh...
Wasn't that supposed to wake you up?
Disbelief started to fade from her gaze as the creature morphed back into human. She was a pretty thing, if Kerrigan could ignore the fact that, well, she had just transformed before her eyes. If they had met at a bar and not... well, like this, she would be a candidate for the fire-headed girl's number. But, well, that wasn't the bar, although honestly, it felt like she needed a drink.
"It's... Kerrigan. Not Cary," she found herself saying, although she was quite sure she would be ignored. She'd learn that a lot of the time, when dealing with the creatures that go bump in the night, most of what she would have to say would be formality. After all, she'd probably get the picture that they didn't have much incentive to listen to her, not when they could just turn into wolf things...
She watched the woman leave, and her head turned back towards Seraph. She let out a laugh, shaking her head. It was clear that she was physically unsettled, but also, she found the fact that after that [/it] happened, that was his response to be hilarious. Oh, gods, what had she gotten herself into.
"No kidding," she responded after pulling herself together. "A lot to unpack might be the understatement of the year. What was that? Why was that?"
"Oh wow. That is a loaded question, let's start with an easier one. She is a time wolf, an incredibly rare b- actually let's start smaller. There are multiple supernatural species living in this city and not long ago there were six "kingdoms" of sorts. The demons who started trouble, the angels who ended trouble, no matter the cost. The witches who... Honestly just hung out. The mutants who were at war with themselves, the werewolves who lived in peace, the vampires who hunted the human race, and then the hunters, the humans who hunted all of the above. But the coven of witches dwindled, the angels have vanished, the vampires and werewolves were hunted to near extinction, and there are fewer demons than ever before. They've been a well kept secret and soon, if we're lucky, they'll fizzle out of existence entirely in the next one hundred years," Seraph explained.
"That girl is named Green, or Lily, whatever you want to call her. She's a rare time wolf and possibly one of the most powerful creatures in this city. She can reverse, pause time, manipulate time on a specific object or person. I also hate her."
Seraph turned to look at her, which he had resisted doing up until now, "So what are the rest of your questions?" He asked almost uneasily, probably anticipating that there would be follow up questions to all of that. That and he hadn't mentioned yet that he was the leader of the hunters and she would be the first mayor made aware of this.
"A what? What the f u c k , and I mean that term intentionally and literally, is a time wolf?" She should have just stayed in her office. This, this was quickly too much. She found herself reaching into her pocket, fingers brushing her pack of cigarettes. Good, at least they were there. She didn't take one out yet, but she could tell that as soon as she was alone, she'd probably end up chainsmoking the afternoon away to cope with the trauma that this meeting was going to be.
"Multiple species?" she then found herself saying, her eyes widening. She was dreaming, she had to be dreaming. There was simply no other explanation, right? "Is this a joke? Some undercover boss type stuff? A prank? How fast can we drive Kerrigan into absolute madness?" Her words came quickly, her hand then moving to rub her temples. She already had a headache. However, no matter how much logically she wanted to deny what she saw was real, there was a part of her that knew it was. That no amount of denial would change that.
She took a moment to center herself. Breathe, Kerrigan. Then, she let her gaze wander again to him.
"Dare I ask why you hate her? That seems to be the single least important piece of information, but hey. Might as well know if the time wolf is involved in like murdering half the city or something worth hating." She blinked a few times. She hated that she was having this conversation. Hated, hated, hated it.
"And why do you know all of this? Are you some freaky ass creature? Should I be concerned for my life right now? And why are you telling me all of this? Wouldn't it be easier if humans didn't know? Or, what, is this my innitiation in the crazy? Is this how new mutant vampires are chosen? Or, even better, are you taking me to a satan worship blood sacrifice because you needed a token human?" She anticipated that these were mostly jokes, at least the last two or three, but were they, really?
Seraph grabbed her hands, "Chill out," He said more firmly than yelling at her and let go of her hands, "You're Kerrigan Harlow and I keep every other human on earth away from knowing this, but I looked at you out of every single person in this city and decided you could handle this knowledge because you're intelligent, tough, and beyond all else resilient and quick on your feet. So yeah, there's a talking wolf, but if little red riding hood can handle that then so can you," He said encouragingly
He sat back in his seat with a rather relaxed expression, "I don't like her because- Y'know what, too early of a conversation, we'll get to that once we address the basics," He said, deciding that Kerrigan was definitely not going to trust him at all or ever if the next thing that came out of his mouth was explaining how he kidnapped the time wolf until a demon beat him up and stole her or rather stole her back.
"Let's start with me instead, I am human," He said taking out a flashlight and shinned it into his eye before giving it to Kerrigan. The base of the flashlight read "100% Human," on a small lit up screen, "But I was born into a family of monsters, I was a fluke. So naturally I grew up knowing about the world of supernaturals, but I was never one myself. What I do is hunt supernaturals, dangerous or not, my goal is to just eliminate them entirely. But as I said, I came from a family of powerful creatures so I began to create inventions that help eliminate powers without killing the person. I lead an organization of humans who know about supernaturals and help eliminate them in whatever way that means for them."
He looked more directly at Kerrigan, his ice blue eyes laser focused on her, "I'm telling you this because for years us hunters have been trying to tip toe around mayors and other government officials trying to do our job. But it would be a lot easier if we were at least on the same page with you so we can do our job more efficiently. So, now you know... Not in the way I wanted you to find out, but you know that supernaturals exist. So when I ask you to close a place or street down maybe you can do that for me so we can keep time wolves and other creepy creatures out of the way?"
He seemed pretty sincere about it all, if anything he just seemed a little emotionally worn down from seeing the time wolf than actually concerned about Kerrigan's mental state. Probably because he was inferring she would get over it
Well, maybe that was a mistake, a part of her thought. It was the same part of her that always doubted just about everything, from the life she was living to the friends she made. It was a critical part, one that was generally untrusting of the world around her. She blinked it off though, instead focusing on the fact she had been touched. There was a part of her that wanted to pull her hands away, and quickly, but she knew he was trying to get to her. And he was right, she needed to focus. She could deal with this, at least until she woke up from whatever nightmare she was having. She took a deep breath, forcing herself to recenter. "Okay," was all she managed to say, the words coming out tense.
"How do I know you're human? How do I know anyone is a human?" she asked, her words slow as she tried to grapple with the situation. She met tens or perhaps hundreds of people a week. How many of them were not... normal? "And why would you want to create inventions that eliminate powers? What if the invention was to fail?" It seemed that execution was a better safeguard, but perhaps that was the lawful evil in her.
"How many other people... know?" Was it a select few, or would she be able to tell those who needed to know? Her hazel eyes met his ice blue, and she almost looked like she was coming to grips with this conversation.
"I'll do it," she replied, her voice slightly hesitant. "As long as I am privy to all information and am kept completely in the loop. If you go behind my back, I will eliminate our working together and figure out a way to solve the problem on my own."
He once again held out the flashlight to her, "This identifies species and once I find you to be reliable I'll make one for you, but for now it's a device for hunters only. I'm willing to make an exception for you given your area of power and to keep you along with that power safe."
Seraph bit the corner of his cheek, "I made the invention because my daughters a mutant, she's not a good person by any stretch, but I abandoned her and she didn't deserve to be hunted down and shot dead by me cause of my failures to her. It actually worked on her, she lost all her power. Not to mention, when you really think about it, for as ferocious as my hunters are a lot don't take a lot of pleasure in killing kids who often time aren't even aware they're any different than the rest of the population. A lot of them don't even want their powers. The end goal is to eliminate supernaturals, but I want to give the hunters a choice to do it peacefully or violently unlike the one choice I had in the past."
He looked at Kerrigan in the eyes for a moment and in instantly saw the intensity of her gaze and trusted her to stay committed, "I'll always keep you in the loop," He promised before adding, "But don't you dare get mad at me if I'm a day late to tell you the drama because I was held captive somewhere. I don't need you abandoning hope in me because human vs monster didn't work out. And that would be less than 1% of New York cities population is aware of supernaturals."
His fingers tapped the wheel of his car wondering if he should drop her off... No he should probably grab her that coffee he promised her. He put the car in drive again deciding to take her there.