Snakes In A Convention Hall


dee corgan halima.bmp

Scene Title Looking Into The Beauty Queen Death / Snakes In A Convention Hall
Synopsis Dee, Halima and Corgan, after doing a little footwork at the zoo and on the street, arrive on scene at the convention hall where the beauty queen was murdered, to look further into her suspicious death.


Holosuite 1 - Somewhere in Creation
Open RP room. You can make this place anywhere you want. Yeah, just put it in your scene sets.

The small convention space in Washington Heights has been taken over by the police, the place has been scoured and such, but for the most part it is manned by a small group of officers who are here to simply preserve the crime scene incase the investigators need anything else. Most of them are sitting out front of the building, drinking coffee and watching a football game on a small TV in the back of one of their cars. Corgan, having been to both the zoo and the street has turned up very little….aside from the fact that a young woman matching Halima's description was at the zoo earlier and asking around about escaped animals and the like and another matching Dee's description has been asking around the street about possible hits. The answer to both inquiries has brought about no results or information, which brings all three members of independent investigations to the same place…..and as fate would have it….all of them arrive at the exact same time.

Wrapping the leash of his dog around his hand, Corgan clucks his tongue and murmurs, "C'mon, Rudy," to the massive Irish wolf-hound. Upon entrance into the convention space, he begins to approach the police officers observing the crime scene, "Heya, gents. I got a call in from the investigations department statin' that there was a need f'me to take a look 'round the place," his accent is horrendously Bostonian. He flashes a smile at one of them and glances down at his clothing. "I was in deep cover whenever I got the call, as y'can see. From the fifty-third precinct. I just need a brief run-down quick-like on what's been found, what's goin' on, and what areas have been scoured s'far."

Halima putters up on a vintage yellow vespa. It's a little banged up, but looks like it's been freshly washed. She kills the motor after she brings the wheels up onto the sidewalk and flicks off a touch-screen cellphone she was idly talking into. Halima stomps down on the kickstand and steps off the bike. She has a big shoulder bag clutched to her side. She mutters something to herself about bullshitting her way in.

Dee has been dressing more low-key to poke around, really not wanting to stand out as someone 'interesting' looking into the death. She's in a simple button-down blue blouse and jeans as she arrives at the place in question to have a more first-hand look. She's quiet as she takes in the others showing interest in what happens.

The cops seeing the smiling face, looking to the group and just nod a bit and gesture over towards a back room. It's taped off, but then the group goes back to talking about fantasy football and the like. They apparently are under the assumption that since the group arrived together, they are part of the investigation team. "SI didn't give us any info…we just hold the parameter." Is all that is offered.

"Ah'right. Thanks, boys. I'mma take the dog 'round and have him sniff out some clues, look into a few things," Corgan smiles again, and as he turns away it becomes a slight grin; his large boots take him clomping towards the back room. He glances down at the barghest pup, who shares a look with his master, then ducks down underneath the tape to enter into the back room. "Well, Rudy," he talks to the bandy-legged Grim, "assumin' that y'didn't get out and start chompin' on some chick, I'm guessin' that there's probably somethin' else goin' on here that's a little outside the norm." His voice is kept low and soft as he speaks to the creature. "Sniff 'round a bit."

Dee looks around her for a moment. Did they mean her, too? Well, okay, then. She's not one to ignore an opportunity, and hurries to stay 'included' by following Corgan. "Lovely day we're having, aren't we?" she asks casually as she looks around them with her enhanced senses, to sense signals that'll lead her to the surveillance cameras in the area.

(Judge) Halima rolls 6: [ 2 3 5 8 9 <10> ]
Resulting in 4 successes.

Halima peers down the hallway indicated without much concern for the officers at the door. The persian woman draws an old-timey scroll out of her bag, the kind you might have seen at a Bar Mitzvah if you had any jewish male friends (or were a jewish boy yourself!) growing up. This one is considerably smaller than the Torah, however. She unfurls it slightly, supporting it with the underside of her forearm as she hunts over it. She plucks a silvery thread from the surface and draws it out before letting it snap back into place. She seems somewhat satisfied with this, and places the scroll away.

The room is a mess, there is a marked out space where the body was found, plenty of blood and the like here and there, splattered on the wall. For those of you using say…a magic spell. There effects are immediate. Halima, Dee, Rudy -and- Corgan light up as if there were somehow divine and the threads interlace the 4 of you in such a way that suggest you are all on the same side. Surveillance yes….outside in the halls and such, as this is a small dressing room…no no cameras. Rudy sniffs around a bit and snorts a little at something, pawing to scrape something off of his nose.

Halima squats near the corpse with a blank expression, eyeing a few splats of blood. She resembles a bird studying a curious object. "What do you lot think?" she asks in a British accent. "By the by, we've got some introductions to make."

"Oh, it's just excellent," Corgan responds to Dee, "after all, s'not every day y'get to go and hang out at crime scenes, eh?" He brushes a hand over his eyes and goes for the dog, reaching down to brush whatever the barghest has on its nose. Hunkering down, he sucks in against his teeth and begins an investigation of the floor where Rudy was snorting. "Lotsa blood here, though. So, according to the website that I looked at, she was all torn up, with bite marks on her wrist." He rises up to his feet and turns to look back at the two women, nodding at Halima, "We do at that, I s'pose. S'far as what I think, eh.. what do we know about the girl what was killed?"

"We should probably get access to the body. I've heard the body has been mutilated. It's in line with some cult practices to remove certain organs such as eyes or tongues." Halima stands from examining the floor and adjusts the hanging from her shoulder. "Halima, sired by Thoth. You two?" She looks between Corgan and Dee, expectantly.

Dee chuckles. "Yeah." she replies to Corgan. "Someone really should talk to the cops about security here. Oh, wait. That was the cops that let us in." she notes with a faint smirk as she continues looking around the scene. She looks surprised at Halima's openness about it all, and eyes her for a moment. "Dee. Hermes." There's a look around the dressing room for any personal effects that might have been overlooked.

"Corgan O'Connor, son of Lugh." The kid looks down at his dog and gestures, "This is Rudy. He's a barghest. Or one of the Grim. Black dog kinda thing." He pats the dog on the head, "he's also a puppy, so prone to spazzin' out and gettin' into fits and such," Corgan licks at his teeth and tucks a hand down into his coat pocket, glancing up towads the ceiling. "Cops did let us in. Somethin' tells me that they're not all too interested in what happened, s'much as just glorified door men. Eyes and tongue were removed? Seems strange, what sorta cults do you think would be into that kinda thing? I just moved down here recently, so.. not too, ah, up on the local death cult scene."

"A Grim. Like in Harry Potter?" Dee tries so hard to keep a straight face, and she mostly succeeds. Fortunately, she's not really looking at the other two when she sees it. "Maybe they were just trying to get the attention of some of us, by making it look odd. Worked, didn't it?"

Halima shrugs. "Would need to look at the body to see if the parts have been cut away or torn away or bit away. Would need an examiner to tell that, though. I'm a physicist, not a physician so I couldn't be much help telling a bite from a tear." Halima looks around the room some more, careful not to step in any blood as she meanders about. "But the eyes and tongue certainly have occult significance. Perhaps the other parts removed were red herrings dragged across the fox path."

Frowning in Dee's direction, Corgan nods, "Yeah, like in Harry Potter. It's.. ah," he clears his throat, then looks down at his shameful pop-culture companion. Shame! He takes a step towards Halima and gestures in Dee's direction, "She's got a point. Someone's tryin' to make somethin' obvious, like some kinda crazy ostentatious Christmas tree death party," he scratches at his head, trying to parse out his own thoughts, "If you follow, there. I mean, it's easy to see that someone's goadin' someone else. Or us. Eyes and tongue do have an occult significance; d'you think that someone is trying to make somethin' or summon somethin' up? This really isn't my, eh, forte. I'm more of a fightin' sort."

The persian woman shrugs again. "I'm not a fan of guessing. I can see the threads of fate, not read ahead to get how the story ends. We should look at the body. Eyes and tongue are also soft and easy to eat. Buzzards and other carrion birds go for them." Halima looks to Dee and Corgan. "We should also get some photos of the scene here."

"Well, we can always get a look at the coroner's report later. And the pictures, once they're scanned into the computer." Dee replies, her tone saying there's no doubt she can get her hands on it. "Her ears and nose were still intact though, right? So… Can't see, can't taste. Leaves hearing and smell. I mean, unless that's too symbolic for what the person responsible was going for. I could easily be over-thinking it.

"Ears and nose probably aren't symbolic, I don't think. Scent and hearing being what they are, I don't think that has any kind of occult significance," Corgan drawls, reaching down to brush his fingers over the barghest's head. He watches Dee thoughtfully, then says, "My best friend is a sibling of yours, by the way. You'll hafta meet." He observes the blood splatters, "Halima, is it possible that the blood spatter has some sort of … ah," he gives a gesture towards the blood with a hand, "meaning?" The punk sighs in such a way that states he was looking for a word far better than the one uttered.

"Dunno. Let's get some photos of this place and then see if we can get those bobbies outside to tell us what precinct they took the corpse to." She pulls out her touch screen phone again and thumbs through a few apps. "Fate works in strange ways," she snaps a few shots, "maybe there are clues here we can't see until we see them with different eyes. Eyes are important. Sacrificing an eye often represents a desire to gain some esoteric knowledge that can't be acquired with mundane sight. Essentially," she squats to get a closer shot of a few spots, "you give up your mundane sight for arcane sight. Likewise, for a tongue, you can no longer speak. You can't eat very well, either…"

Dee returns to studying the scene, her own senses broader than those of mortals. "Mmmm…" Her PDA comes out. "Any way to tell if she was one of us?" For that one, she looks at Halima. She knew what they were, after all.

Corgan nods and tucks his hands down into his pockets, looking to Halima. He smiles at her and is soon after joined by his large dog that sits down on his haunches. Grabbing a small treat from his pocket, Corgan offers it to the dog and looks back to Halima. "I can talk them up outside and bullshit my way inta gettin' them to give me some information as to where they took the body, if you want. See what I can do, I guess," he offers.

"I'd have to take a longer look at the body. Or get someone to conjure up her ghost, then we could talk to her directly. Osiris gets a little pissy when you take his flatmates without asking, though." She stands with a wry smile below her wide nose. "And we should probably see if there are any witnesses that noticed any strange behavior on her part or by people near her before she died. Any residual leavings of fateful beings will be on the body most strongly, and the witnesses to a lesser extent."

Dee nods as she listens. "I can see what's on her computer or at her place, too. You know, that might tell if there was something odd. If she was one of us, though, and her Relics aren't among her belongings, they've probably been swiped. There's been some of that."

"There we go, then. I bet if she was one of us, then this was some sorta contract thing, or grudge thing, which doesn't bode well with me, not one bit. Keepin' grudges is for lesser folk," Corgan rests his hands on his hips and looks towards the door leading away from the room. "So.. okay, I'm nominally good at fighting and talking, but that's not going to get us too far there. If you could channel up the ghost of the body, that'd be great, an'.. computer, Dee, do you need some backup when you go for her computer?"

Dee mms. "Well, there's also just things going after some of us. There's a lot of people who aren't too happy about being told all those other gods are real." She considers the offer then, and says "Depends on how good you are at subtle. I don't exactly plan on just barging in there."
"I can't confirm or deny that. And we'd need to find someone else to conjure up her ghost. That's not the easiest thing to do. And I don't think it will be necessary in all honesty." Halima tucks her phone away and draws her mouth flat. "If this is an occult-driven crime then there will be some tell-tale markings that will help finger the culprit."

Nodding, Corgan wets his lips and folds his arms in front of his chest. "Ah'right. That's a good point. I don't know too much 'bout magic or the occult or anythin' like that. I usually left that to a friend of mine." He looks towards Dee thoughtfully, watching her, "Yeah, I heard 'bout that. Kinda crazy. Think this might have something to do with that? The news cast?" Upon asking, he looks back to Halima, watching her.

"Yeah, I'm not really a magic sort, either." Dee adds. "And there's no way to know yet, if this is related. There's too many things it could be. So, we'll get what we can, here. Nothing that can be sensed from the blood?" she asks as she continues to look around carefully. Gloves are ensuring she's not leaving anything behind.

"I think blood this old is going to be pretty degraded both mundanely and mystically. It would be like sacrificing your garbage, which if you know your mythology, ultimately led Cain to commit the first murder." Halima pauses for a moment, "I suppose that might not be mythology, technically. Given the current circumstances of this conversation, I think we can remove the 'myth' from many parts of history. Anyway. There will be decently preserved samples at the precinct where the body is being stored."

Dee continues to listen, though she's also looking carefully.

Likewise, Corgan's certainly not touching anything. He's going about trying to look at the blood but not step into any of the puddles. His head gives a slow shake from side to side, "I don't know s'much 'bout that, Halima. Fallin' into the whole Judeo-Christian thing just gets messy, 'specially when you're raised as a good Catholic Irish boy," he slips his hand down into his coat sleeve and uses the sleeve to pick up one of the beauty queen's belongings, turning it over to get a good feel for it. "So, this blood is pretty damn old, then? Like.. no one's really going to use it? Maybe one of those.. ah, Aztec people? I don't know much about sacrifice. Do you think this coulda been done by one of us?"

After the introductions have been made between Dee, Halima and Corgan, he glances over towards the blood on the walls and says, "Ah'right, so the game plan is: Dee goes an' checks out the computer, Halima, you're gonna check out the occult stuff, and I'll be talkin' t'people, right?" He scratches at his forehead and wraps his hand around Rudy's leash.

Dee nods to Corgan. "Sure." She takes a pair of business cards from her satchel, and offers one to each. "Can you get in to see the body, do you think? Or will I need to get us in?"

<OOC> Zubat says, "One moment, catching up."

Halima leans in to examine a few of the dried pools of blood. "I want to get a better look at the body and a better-presrved blood sample." She kneels down to bring her face a few centimeters away from a puddle. "I was planning on asking nicely…" she responds to Dee, "…but if need be we can break in. This is the work of some kind of occultist. I can't make any judgements until I get to see a stronger source of the energy. It's faint and fleeting and I just saw it as if out of the corner of my eye."

<OOC> Zubat says, "Ok, so….you've been loosing around, all three of you. Corgan has a point in command, so I would ask he roll it. For every success, that is how many people can combine dice rolls get get info from the scene."

<OOC> Zubat says, "Corgan….appropriate social roll (charisma+command) please"

(Judge) Corgan rolls 3: [ 2 4 6 ]
Resulting in a failure.

<OOC> Zubat pokes. Legend point good.
<OOC> Corgan says, "Oh, yes!"
<OOC> Corgan says, "Spending legend!"

(Judge) Corgan rolls 3: [ 6 7 9 ]
Resulting in 2 successes.

<OOC> Zubat says, "Excellent, with epic charisma, that is 3 meaning the three of you can combine investigations rolls. If each of you would roll your perception+investigation"
(Judge) Dee rolls 7: [ 3 3 3 4 6 7 <10> ]
Resulting in 3 successes.

(Judge) Halima rolls 6: [ 3 3 6 7 <10> <10> ]
Resulting in 5 successes.

<OOC> Dee says, "5 total."
(Judge) Corgan rolls 3: [ -1- 2 <10> ]
Resulting in 2 successes.

<OOC> Halima says, "7 total."
<OOC> Corgan eyeshifts, "Two for me."
There are several things that are harder for those without epic perception to notice. Like one, there are a few ants there…that's what Corgan notices as he pulls one off of his dogs nose. There are a few in the blood, having gotten stuck. They seem to have come from under one of the dressers that has been bolted down in the back so it isn't stolen. For Halima, there is something small and shimmery that perhaps no one could have noticed with the collection of all the blood. A tiny shimmering grey-green scale perhaps the size of a pinky-nale. And as for Dee….that blood on the wall. It's different than say the splatter of an artery shooting pressurizes blood out and fighting gravity. No, some of it looks perhaps as if something was spinning at a high speed….like a wheel. Sort of like when you drive through a puddle and water sprays up and out….

Dee's sharp eyes are moving slowly over the scene, and finally stop at the blood on the wall. "Huh." She says, in a thoughtful manner as she walks over for a closer look.
Halima reaches into her bag and pulls out a bag of tissues. She plucks one out and uses it to tease the scale free of the dried blood. "It's small, but unusual. It's a scale, like from a reptile." She stands to get more light on the scale, turning it from side to side to watch the light catch on it. "Anyone else find anything interesting?" She doesn't take her eyes off her little prize.

"Gross. Ants. I'm sorry, Rudy-pup," Corgan scratches at the dog's head and rubs at his own chin, taking a few steps towards Dee. He looks over the wall that she's watching and tilts his head. "What do y'see?" His eyes aren't as trained as hers, no doubt. He turns back to look towards Halima and frowns a bit, lowering his brows. "A scale? That's odd," he rubs his hands together to flake off the dried blood that's stuck to his skin from wiping it from his dog's nose. He holds his forefinger up to observe one of the ants, all carmelized and drowned in the stuff, stuck to his fingertip. "Dee, what's up with the wall?" He begins to search around the room, looking for where the ants came from. Hole in the wall somewhere? Hmm.

Dee purses her lips. "This splatter isn't the same. It goes upwards instead of with gravity. It's not like the others." She looks back to the other bloodstains, as though trying to determine exactly how it fits in. Or doesn't. "And it's not like something from a small spinning blade. It was a big one."

Rudy the dog, snuffles along a trail and starts towards that dresser, pushing his head up and under it as he starts to dig with his paws, like he wants under it for some reason.

Halima looks up from the scale for a second at the mention of a blood spatter. She tilts her head from size to size as she looks at it. "The splatter is too thick to be from a saw or a blade. You ever see a car tire throw water or mud? It doesn't throw it in an arc perpendicular to its direction of rotation, at least not on the horizontal axis. This was from something bigger." She clicks her teeth together. "Strange. I don't think it was made by something sharp, either…"

"Rudy, no, stop diggin'," Corgan calls over towards the barghest. He starts in that direction then, reaching down to pull on Rudy's collar, albeit gently, to pull the dog away from the dresser. He ducks down and goes to look beneath it, narrowing his eyes as he reaches a hand down to try to lift it slightly. Not strong, but quick and deft, he moves to snake his fingers beneath the dresser. "So, you thinkin' someone used a saw blade'r somethin'? Like one giant buzz saw?"

Zubat pages: More ants….some dead, some not, little bit of debris, like plaster and…earth?
You paged Zubat with 'Earth is weird!'
From afar, Zubat nods. Ayup

Dee nods to Halima. "Yeah. It's definitely weird. I mean, compared to the rest." She shakes her head then, to corgan's question. "I don't think it was exactly that, no. A spinning blade, I mean." She looks curious, as he reaches under the dresser.

Halima shakes her head. "No. Too thick of a splatter pattern. If this was made with a circular saw, you'd expect something this wide after a long descent, which is not the case here since these drops don't seem to have reached the inflection point of their trajectory. But I'm not sure what could be used to make a pattern like this and still cut someone… It's like someone held a wheel down to a puddle of blood and span it."

Zubat pages: Few of the ants bite you.

After a hiss like pain, the punk kid says, "It looks like there's some dirt under here, like turned earth, some plaster," Corgan rises back up to his feet and goes to the other side of the dresser. He begins to push it away from the wall, "Rudy, stay back," he mutters to the barghest. He sends a glance towards the women and simply nods to Halima's explanation.

Dee purses her lips. From her satchel comes a small but strong penlight, and she bends to try to look under the dresser with her sharp eyes.

And… there's not much of a budge from the dresser. Corgan coughs a little and smiles sheepishly at the girls. "It's, like, bolted down t'the floor. I don't think, I'm not the most," he just sort of trails off there in a bashful fashion, looking down to his dog. "Right, well, there's gotta be some way we can move this thing," he glances towards Halima, "Any ideas?" Afterwards, his eyes are turned down to inspect what Dee's doing with her penlight.

Halima folds the scale up in the tissue and tucks it into her bag carefully. "I could shoot through the bolts." She draws her hand out of her bag and stuffs it into her suit blazer. When she pulls it out, it's holding a massive revolver that looks like it would be just as dangerous shooting someone as it would be bludgeoning them. "But I don't think that would be a good idea."
Dee continues to look carefully, searching for any sign of what might have drilled from another room to cause the plaster and perhaps dirt. "A quote comes to mind." she says then. "Anything not nailed down is mine. Anything I can pry loose is not nailed down. Look for where the nails are, so we can pry them loose?"

Taking a step back from the dresser, Corgan nods and reaches into his pockets. He comes out with his keys, then looks curiously down towards the bottom of the dresser. No, that probably would just result in broken keys. He places them back into his pocket and goes about looking for something that could be used to pry the nails up in the room. "Shootin' the bolts is a bad idea, I think," he responds to Halima.

Halima stuffs her revolver back into her jacket. It hides it surprisingly well. "Then I guess one of you two burglars should figure out how to get this thing to move. Bobbies outside might not appreciate it getting ripped off the wall, but if that's what it takes we aren't exactly flyweights at Queensbury."

Dee looks back and forth between Corgan and Halima, then smiles and again reaches into her satchel. Apparently, she's an honorary girlscout. It isn't a large prybar, but it is a very solid one. "I like to be prepared." Never know what she'll need, to get into a place. She stands, to get a better look at where it needs to be applied.

Halima points to a few spots on the wall. "Look for where the bolts join the dresser and pry slightly above the highest bolt and slightly below the lowest bolt. You'll probably break the wall or wood before the metal, so you'll want to strain it rather than the bolt."

"Burglar?" Corgan frowns a little. "I can assure you that I'm certainly not a burglar. At least, not anymore," he looks down towards the bottom of the dresser again and shakes his head. Also, it appears he was never really a physics major. He taps his fingers against the dresser and says, "Maybe if we just, like, start from the back and push it forward it'll.." he looks over towards Halima, then at Dee. "Wait, why do you have a crowbar in your bag?"

Dee nods to Halima, and starts working carefully to separate the dresser from the wall. She smiles then to Corgan, and says "In case I need one. And look. We need one." She winks at the two.

Halima looks a little self-satisfied at her first assessment. "See. Burglars. Or burg-LAR at least."

The dresser after a little trouble comes loose and behind it, spilling out of the wall is a burrowed hole, about the size of a grown mans leg. It goes through the wall and then down.

"Point taken, and yes, it looks like we need one. Here — I'll help y'out here," Corgan leans down towards where the bolts are and helps Dee pry it loose and snap the bolts. He peers down towards the hole, then holds a hand out in case Rudy lunges for it. "Looks like a snake might'a done this, or maybe some kinda.. homicidal gopher. A big one, too."

Once the hole is revealed, Dee's forehead furrows deeply. "And whatever it was must have taken the parts that would fit through the hole with it. Asked to bring the eyes and tongue, but also took dinner. Maybe more than one. Let the Grim get a good sniff, for tracking later. I'm guessing a snake or snakes, considering the scale Halima found." Then, on the other matter, she smiles to Halima. "'Burglar' makes me sound so common. There is nothing common about what I do."
Halima leans in to peer down the hole. "Snake or some other burrowing lizard would be in agreement with the evidence found on the scene. Leaving a scale behind. And this would make an entrance for ants if there wasn't one already. Still leaves a few questions unanswered."

Halima straightens and tugs her bag closer to her body, "Let's see about getting the rest of our information and then look at what we have. I might need your help," she points to Dee, "getting into the precinct or morgue where they're keeping the body. We'll see. Email me. Khayyam dot one at B-N-L dot gov."

Corgan allows the dog to sniff at the hole, then wraps his hand around the leash, pulling him along. "That's a good idea. You all can e-mail me or call me," he pulls out his cellphone from his pocket, mentioning, "it's free dash runner dot 'c,' as in the letter, at yahoo dot com," so plain compared to a gov domain name. He reaches a hand up and brushes at the tip of his nose. "An' it was nice meetin' both of you."

Dee nods as she listens to the others. "My number's on the card." she says, and once Rudy is out of the way she uses her own senses to get what information she can from the hole. "It was nice meeting you both, as well. We should get the dresser back in place before we leave, and then all leave together. Continue the illusion that we came together."

Halima nods, "Right then. I'm going to get this scale under a microscope and hit the books. When you two leave I'll follow you out." Halima occupies herself with scanning over the rest of the room. "Until then I'm just going to double check…"

"Sounds like a plan to me," Corgan says, moving to push the dresser back into place. He's not the strongest fellow, but he's still hopefully strong enough to move around a dresser after it's been unbolted from the floor. He looks over to Halima and sucks in against his teeth. "I'll make sure to keep you apprised of anything I figure out as well." He doesn't question Halima, instead moving towards the door with his dog in tow.

Dee smiles to the pair, then moves to leave with the others. "Oh, and keep an eye out for large snakes…"

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