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Pterano

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Anonymous Rex
« Reply #40 on: December 20, 2013, 03:12:27 pm »
"Yeah well, for my sake, this is one of the few times I'm actually glad I was at a Council meeting." Vincent cracked wryly.

Vincent turned behind him to follow along with what Nicky was describing as to how this cleaner ended up in his position. The door wasn't forced... so how the hell did they get in? Or more correctly... did she get in? But he was getting ahead of himself. He didn't know if this was some sick joke on someone's part trying to make him think he was seeing ghosts... but then again... aside from Ernie... who knew about Circe? And more importantly, who knew about the relationship they'd had before her demise? Vincent could count only two... Ernie and Dan. Neither of them had ever gone to lengths like this to play a prank on him.

Vincent closed his eyes for a moment, trying to follow this. Hold on... they were targeting him? In addition to Morrow? And someone inside... had gotten the drop on them? Someone inside his supposedly locked apartment? This was getting creepy.

He twitched visibly as Nicky watched his face, asking his question about who might want to get his attention. A card with a bow? OK... when had he officially stepped into the Twilight Zone? Was it somewhere between Hollywood and Beverly Hills? He could honestly not remember a card being on his nightstand when he woke up this morning. Curiouser and curiouser...

"Ah... maybe." Vincent finally answered at long last, moving towards his bedroom. "But no one comes to mind." he lied. Hoo! That herbal aroma was heaviest in here... his head was practically swimming as he reached out for the card and took it, noticing the handwriting. What did hers look like again?

"Uh... Detective Chaseman, sorry, but I'm afraid I'm losing the plot here." the PI said as he came back out, tapping the card in his hand. "You said I was being targeted WITH Morrow? I'm sorry but I have next to nothing in common with that guy. I'm the most junior member on the Council, and he's one of the most senior... well was." Vincent corrected now. It was hard being senior anything when you were dead.

"I mean I have almost no say on anything they do, and if I even propose something, it has to meet with unanimous approval from the senior level Councillors. Councillor Morrow" Vincent talked freely here, as the cops hadn't come back in yet, "wasn't working on anything particularly... valuable either. I mean he was basically slogging through the year-end budget reports and wasn't on the oversight committee that's been appointed to investigate this new virus." Vincent explained, beginning to absent-mindedly undo the green bow on his card.

"So why would anyone target him, much less me? Well OK... me I guess I can sort of see, because of my knowledge about the Progressives, and while I confess, I do have some sensitive notes on them stored here, Councillor Morrow had nothing to do with any of that. I report directly to Councillor Irons on any matters regarding them. Councillor Morrow wasn't part of that process."

Vincent had pulled the card out now after clumsily ripping open the top of the envelope. More carefully unfolding the card itself, he began reading as he listened for Nicky's response. As he read, it became evident he was seeing specters, or the closest thing to them. His eyes grew wider as he read, and he looked incredibly insecure as his eyes descended down the page.

Vincent,

I hope this finds you well. I wish our first contact had been under more... agreeable circumstances, but you and I are in danger. I'm afraid our pasts are catching up with us, and are growing larger every day. I wish I could be telling you this to your face, so that I could once again gaze into your peaceful yet keen eyes. I've seen you recently; your eyes look so sad now, so defeated. I know how heavy your heart must be, but I hope to soon lift this burden and see you smile again. If you are interested in catching up, I cordially invite you to consider attending the 2013 Christmas Evening Gala at 6705 Vado Drive three nights from now. It's strictly dinos only... no guises, so please, check yours at the door. Bring Mr. Watson if you like, or any of your other friends who gate-crashed our last get-together. I promise you, there will be no fights atop gigantic falsified fossils this time.

I hope soon to embrace you, and once more feel your flesh against mine. But do behave yourself at this party; the guests will be watching, I assure you. Please take care of yourself until then, and be extremely careful... dangers are in places you might least expect, after all.

My love to you for the holidays, and a very Merry Christmas to you if you should choose not to attend in three nights.

C


Vincent had sniffled, his hands trembling a bit as he suddenly reached up and wiped his eyes. "I'm sorry..." he apologized to Nicky now. "I just... the scent in here is rather strong." he delivered his none-too-convincing excuse.

==========================

"So you fought back?" Dan asked, frowning and nodding. "Very well. I'd like to get your statement if you please." he motioned for a cop to bring over the witness statement forms. "If you could just fill this out with everything you saw, heard, and witnessed, I would appreciate it very much. Also... contact information, if you please. Your ID has your address, but I'm going to need a phone number and email, if possible." the detective informed him, handing him the statement form.

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bushwacked

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« Reply #41 on: December 20, 2013, 07:09:16 pm »
Nicky nodded, a smile playing at the corner of his mouth for a split second. "I'm sure." It was true though, that scent was particularly powerful here in the bedroom. If the letter was indeed from a woman, then he could make a safe guess as to what was written in the letter. Why is Vincent lying to me? The expression on his face when Nicky had mentioned the letter was plain as day. He knows exactly who left it... who'd broken into his apartment, who'd killed the assassin outside. He knows the dinosaur who fooled me and escaped.

Nicky decided to come out with it. "Mr. Rubio, you don't need to lie to me. Detective Patterson told me about a contact... someone he knew that managed to fight back against the Progressives and win. You're the contact, aren't you? That's how you have all this information on them. You're the one who took them down." He stepped closer and lowered his voice. "I'm sure you know about the virus in New York, about how it only targets mammals. Something tells me this is all linked. I just need to work out what's going on. I think if you were open with me..."

He heard a faint sound behind him and turned to see a woman with long brown hair standing in the bedroom doorway. Though the sweet, perfume-like smell was overpowering, he could catch a faint scent to determine this was a dinosaur too. "Ma'am, I'm sorry but civilians aren't allowed here," he said quickly, making his way over to her. "This is a crime scene."

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« Reply #42 on: December 20, 2013, 07:33:11 pm »
Heather was a little shocked at first as she had been walking up to the 8th floor. After all, she wasn't used to see dead persons lying around. Entering Vincent's room, she immediately knew something's wrong. Being adressed to leave by one of the policemen around, she replied.
"I'm here with Vincent, officer. He kinda outran me on the way from the ground level to the 8th floor hence I'm late." Heather picked up a feminine smell. Something oughtta be wrong...
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« Reply #43 on: December 20, 2013, 07:41:39 pm »
Vincent was surprised at how perceptive this detective was. He could even give Dan Patterson a run for his money. Before he had a chance to answer though, Nicky was moving towards Heather, and Vincent immediately moved to intercede. "Oh! Detective Chaseman! That's my ride here today! She's Heather Corrigan... a friend." Vincent stated.

He looked at the letter in his hands, and sighed. "I'm sorry for being reticent." he apologized. "I just... Detective Chaseman... there are... certain people... I have to protect." He said now, treading carefully. "You're right... I'm not the raptor who so much brought them down as killed their leader... well... indirectly killed their leader. The person truly responsible for his death... is someone I myself thought dead." he said softly here, a twinge of sadness in his tones.

"I don't know how much you know..." he shook his head here. "But back in March when I started my investigation, my first actual social gathering with the Progressives was at a mansion in the Hollywood Hills... and there I met Circe, a female raptor who was kind of like their spokesperson. She was allegedly 96% pure dino... that was this stupid thing the Progressives were after. Trying to achieve 'pure' dinosaur by well... for lack of a better term forcing their converts to revert to the ways of our Ancestors. Anyway, she had this innate ability to completely control her scent and pheromones... she'd been taught how to do so by Raal, leader of the Progressives, who I thought was just a myth... someone who had died long ago. Her pheromones were so powerful... they could send you back in time... or THINK you had been sent back in time. You would fall subject to powerful hallucinations that she had full control over." he explained.

"Anyway... long story short... I fell for her. Fell hard... too hard. It was such a stupid thing to do." Vincent confessed, shaking his head. "You should never become involved with the opposition, even if you ARE just hoping to use them to get information... but before I knew it, I was with her almost constantly as she showed me this island the Progressives had off Hawaii... which was really a secret training facility for their true purpose... training their converts for all out war with humanity. Now look... this makes Circe culpable... I know that... but you have to believe me, Detective Chaseman. She was a dupe. Raal had been using her the whole time without telling her any of this... she was fooled just like everyone else. When she found out..." he paused here, his voice faltering. "She killed both Raal and herself to save me... or so I thought." he said weakly.

"But she... or a very clever imposter... wrote this." he said, holding up the card, but not giving it to Nicky. "This strong aromatic scent filling my condo? That's her... or something incredibly like her." Vincent admitted. He hesitated again here, wondering how much he should reveal. "I have to admit... this is both very exciting... but very disturbing too. If she lived... Raal could've lived." Vincent stated flatly, giving the detective a grave look. Vincent felt his legs become wobbly, so he took a seat in one of his condo's plush chairs.

"There's a little more to this card but... if I tell you... I want the police to back off of her." he said seriously. "I'm sorry if this is obstruction... but I'll gladly be arrested in her place." he said softly. "Look... Circe was a lot of things... but she wasn't a terrorist... and she isn't an extremist. But I don't want you arresting her just yet, or at all if it can be avoided. I want... to learn the truth of what happened that day. I want to know if this recent virus outbreak is connected to them in any way. I will cooperate... but only if she gets immunity for now." Vincent stated resolutely, having found his resolve once more.

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« Reply #44 on: December 20, 2013, 08:16:52 pm »
Nicky paused, his gaze flicking between Heather and Vincent. This Circe dinosaur sounded like a threat to him, a danger to the population - and the idea of not actively pursuing her made him ill at ease. But, for some reason, he felt like he could trust Vincent. And Dan seemed to feel the same way...

If it earns his cooperation...He sighed and ran a hand through his hair. "Alright, Mr. Rubio. While I'm looking into this whole... mess, I'll turn a blind eye to her. Hell, she did take out one of the bastards that killed Morrow." Nicky narrowed his eyes. "But if, during the investigation, I find evidence that links her to the virus in New York..." He trailed off, leaving the rest implied. "I'm trusting you on this. Do we have a deal?" He took a step forward to offer a hand to Vincent.

The compy looked at Heather, his hand still outstretched to the private detective. "And can I trust you to keep quiet about this? Not focusing on any potential suspects isn't exactly approved of."

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« Reply #45 on: December 20, 2013, 08:30:02 pm »
Vincent rose, and grasped the compy's hand in his own, and gave it a firm shake. "Deal. But she wouldn't be behind this." he informed Nicky. "She would never do anything to harm humans... not willingly at least." he said. "She's not like that. She was as horrified as I was to learn what her cult stood for. I think someone else is behind this." he admitted now, then turned to face both Heather and the detective.

"Now then... she's suggesting I can meet her three nights from now, at a Christmas party in the Hollywood Hills. I don't know if she'll be there or not but... she indicated she would be. If you want to meet her and judge for yourself, I can take you there." he suggested, before breaking out into a slight smile. "Besides... might do us some good to get out of our guises for once. So what do you two say?" he asked, looking from Nicky to Heather. "You two ready to get your dino butts out of your guises and go stomping around the Hollywood Hills for a night?" he continued, his smile turning into a grin here.

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« Reply #46 on: December 21, 2013, 12:38:45 am »
Cailan made his way towards the group with a small chuckle, shaking his head a little.
"My, my.  Fine mess this is, honestly.  I think that the Progressives were after me, as well.  You see, in a way, I am one of their targets as well.  I apologize for lying to you, but, as I wasn't sure as to who you were, I had to take precautions."
He bowed low in a theatrical way, and, as he stood, grinned broadly.
"My name is Cailan Sablewind.  You may have heard of me.  Especially you, Mr. Rubio."
He said coolly...

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« Reply #47 on: December 21, 2013, 06:30:31 am »
Nicky blanched under his guise. It looked like something out there really wanted him to go to a party. But it'll help with the investigation... And he had to admit, it would be nice to get out of his suit.

"Alright then, it sounds like a good idea," he said, returning the velociraptor's grin with a small twitch at the corner of his mouth. "Since we're going to a party together, I guess you can start calling me Nicky."

When he saw Cailan appear in the next room behind Heather's shoulder, he swore under his breath. "What the hell happened to not letting people wander around crime scenes?" After Cailan introduced himself, he scowled. "I've heard of you." The expression on Nicky's face said clearly what he thought of Sablewind... or more specifically, what he thought of his rather outspoken ideals.

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« Reply #48 on: December 21, 2013, 12:59:54 pm »
"And you can call me Vincent." the PI replied to Nicky, glad he'd agreed to go along. He was more interested in actually seeing if Circe had survived, and besides... a guiseless party! He couldn't possibly resist that! Not that he really minded the guise, but the thought of seeing her in the flesh again... it made his skin crawl.

He turned now, his smile vanishing as Cailan Sablewind bowed in front of him. "Yes... there isn't a member on the Council who hasn't." Vincent replied laconically. "You are one of the most wanted dinos in south California, and while I am not empowered to make an arrest, I AM seriously contemplating it." He glanced to Nicky now. "I'm not sure if you're aware of this, but he's an advocate of human-dinosaur relations, which as you know, are strictly forbidden in any form by our Grand Council. He also failed to execute the human family that had taken him in, and their whereabouts are currently unknown to us. Look..." he turned back to Cailan now.

"I don't have too many problems with the mammals... but there are obvious reasons we can't reveal ourselves to them." the raptor stated. "Movies like Jurassic Park, which was an abomination in my opinion, haven't helped humans' perceptions about us. They see us as feral monsters who died out long ago, and had our Ancestors chose instead to kill the humans early on as opposed to integrating with them, things might've been different... but we chose to hide. We TRIED revealing ourselves to them long ago... our Ancestors and theirs made contact. They butchered us however. And that antagonism... that enmity... it's led to why we do what do."

Now... back when he'd first met Circe, she'd told him the whole story of how the first Ancestors had been massacred by the humans, and how disguising themselves had diminished their true potential over the years. Most of it was Progressive crap, but Vincent had to admit... things hadn't started out well between the early humans and the Ancestors, and that had led directly to the guises they used today. Sure, Vincent wished things could be different... but they weren't. And they hadn't been for 65 million years now.

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« Reply #49 on: December 21, 2013, 01:44:47 pm »
Cailan smirked a little, unfazed by the others contemptuous attitudes towards him.  
"If that was truly the case, then why did my family not attempt to harm me or sell me out?  Humans have changed, Rubio.  They are far more accepting now.  They are willing to listen to reason, to consider options besides violence.  Sure, there are some who will still seek conflict, but now, people like that are a vast minority. If we came forward as friends, as peers, I think things could be different.  Just imagine it.  What if we didn't have to hide anymore?  Just imagine think what we could do together.  Human technology, with our own knowledge of the world...it could usher in a new golden age!"
He countered resolutely...

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« Reply #50 on: December 21, 2013, 01:58:39 pm »
Heather listened to the conversation very closely. Cailan seemed strange to her but his view on the human-dinosaur relationship made her thoughtful. Thoughtful enough to pipe up.
"Well, what's so utterly wrong?" she wondered, adressing nobody in particular. "I know that revealing ourselves to the mammals might end in a chaos but if we act kind and explain things we could do it successfully, couldn't we?"
Everyone's attention was now directed at her. "I don't mind the guise, it's the hiding that is a bit annoying."
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« Reply #51 on: December 21, 2013, 06:03:05 pm »
"Do you know that?" Nicky asked Heather, his attention focused on her. "Can you be sure? You can't pin this all on a maybe. Can you imagine how their lives would be turned upside-down if they found out about us? If it started a war, think about how many could die - both them and us..." Nicky shook his head. "It's not something I'm willing to risk."

He rounded on Cailan. "Vincent might not be able to arrest you, but I can - and I'm finding it hard to think of a reason why I shouldn't slap a pair of cuffs on you right now. At least there'd be one less problem to worry about."

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« Reply #52 on: December 21, 2013, 09:27:54 pm »
Cailan stepped in front of Nicky, looking at him coldly.
"And simply killing anyone who might know anything about us is better to you?  How does that make you any different than the Progressives?  You all see humans as just vermin, as lessers, and yet you live in fear of them.  The way I see it, you're all cowards who merely insist on clinging to an idea, not even considering for a moment what could be.  Half the reason that people would be afraid of you is because you're nothing but murderers."
He said, turning on his heel and walking off.

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« Reply #53 on: December 22, 2013, 01:04:08 am »
Vincent could only shake his head at this. "But they haven't changed much. They fear what they don't understand. Yes... SOME humans that might not be true for... but they're the exception rather than the rule. Humans by and large fear what they don't understand. I mean look at how they treat their own individual ethnicities! Everyone is 'different' in their society; they aren't unified. We could TRY and approach them... but I'm with Detective Chaseman... far more likely we'd be captured for study, or a war would spark over it. We can't be initiators of that kind of widespread slaughter. We're different from the Progressives because we don't actively target humans for extermination in the belief that our own race is superior." Vincent pointed out here.

"Yes, humans who discover our secret must be killed, and that is distasteful, but it's preventing further bloodshed. I agree that walking around in hiding isn't completely natural, but the only other option is too risky right now. I'd LOVE to be able to walk around and have the sunlight play upon my natural hide... but the truth is, we don't live in a fairy tale, much as I wish we did. Ideals are nice... but that's all they are... ideals. While things may change with time, I don't think either society is ready for that."

Vincent sighed as Cailan began walking away, and he shook his head again. "I don't think he's a threat to exposing us but... he IS wanted by the Council." he told Nicky now. "While I'd love to debate the merits of guise or no guise all day, I'm afraid it's pointless at this time. Does it sadden me? You bet. But the fact of the matter is, prejudices still burn in BOTH our societies. It's sad but... it's just the way things are. You can do what you want with him... the Council won't tolerate a major breach after all... so someone's going to end up dead if things get pushed too far." Vincent said grimly.

Sighing heavily again, Vincent sank back down into his chair, and began rereading Circe's letter. Three nights from now. He wasn't sure he could wait that long, but he had to. He had no way of contacting her otherwise.

Looking up at Heather now, the velociraptor PI gave her an apologetic look. "Sorry if I got a bit defensive back there. This question has divided us ever since our Ancestors made first contact with the humans. I wish there WAS a way... but until we learn to stop judging each other for being white skinned, dark skinned, brontosaur, compsognathus, diplodocus, whatever, it's going to be difficult. Me for example... I usually have an aversion to compies." Vincent said, unaware Nicky was one. "To me they're small, annoying, usually dim-witted, and love to hear themselves talk... BUT..." he held up a finger now. "That's also letting my prejudices talk as well... not all of them are like that, and I SHOULDN'T get annoyed with them just because I've encountered more than a few that are like that. It's the same thing the humans do amongst each other. It's just sad we let things like this divide us when we're not so different from each other. All dinosaurs have scales, all humans have skin. Hell I like watching the Super Bowl as much as the mammal sitting on the bar stool next to me does. Maybe he's married and has kids, and I clearly don't, and maybe he's a bit loud and rambunctious, and I'm not, and maybe he goes to church and I don't because our Ancestors never had anything like human religion 65 million years ago, but hell... we still share the same space with each other when watching said Super Bowl... right?" he asked now, his face drawn.

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« Reply #54 on: December 22, 2013, 11:27:00 am »
Vincent's speech made Heather even more thoughtful. Like everyone else, she didn't like the Progressives and their aims... for obvious reasons. Vincent had a point in her view by claiming that the mammals weren't united. In fact, so Heather concluded, they, the dinosaurs that ruled the earth for more than 100 million years, would be considered a minority in the human society, no matter of race. Not to speak that even the dinosaurs weren't really united either.
In hindsight, Heather admitted that hiding was probably the better option. After all, it HAD worked all the time and some collateral damage, namely disposing of humans who knew about them, was quite acceptable and highly preferable over a war with millions of dead.
"I didn't take that into consideration..." Heather stated in a reply to Vincent and Nick. "I think you two are right then though I find it morally wrong to hide..." Thinking of her work in the shop she added. "Y'know... I'm working at a clothing store so I meet people and fellow dinosaurs all the time. For me, it doesn't make much of a difference whether somebody's human or dinosaur, actually. We behave very similar to them, we are about as clever and technologically advanced as they are and we have the same aims in life, don't we?"
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« Reply #55 on: December 22, 2013, 12:41:14 pm »
"We're technically more advanced." Vincent smirked. "We could've had all this they have now 65 million years ago... we just elected not to. When the humans decided to build their society up, we followed suit, all part of our attempts at blending in." he explained. "And while our societies DO differ in some significant regards, we also have significant similarities. Mostly through our integration into their society but... over the millions of years, we've become more similar than dissimilar I think... it's just those last few miles we haven't been able to bridge. Humans like to see us as primitive and vicious hunters who would not hesitate to kill them openly if we existed. It's sad... I mean look at Jurassic Park. It's such hogwash, but that's how a lot of humans see us."

He shrugged here. "We haven't really done much to help that perception in Hollywood... though I have to admit, I kind of did like that Land Before Time series." Vincent commented mirthfully. "That was DEFINITELY made by dinos, and hopefully at least helped some children's perceptions out about us."

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« Reply #56 on: December 22, 2013, 02:07:34 pm »
"Land Before Time? I've never heard of it." Nicky shook his head. "You're right, though. We are essentially the same... so imagine how you'd feel if it turned out people you thought you knew - maybe some of your best friends - were not only lying to you the entire time, but were a species that you'd been told all your life had died out millions of years ago?"

He looked at Heather. "Don't misunderstand me. I'd like nothing more than to walk around without a guise... but I think we've left it too late to show ourselves," he said, a little sadly. "Sablewind means well, but he's dangerous. I'm going to need to report his last known location to the council."

After a short pause, Nicky glanced up at Vincent with a small, wry smile. "Anyway, not to sound dim-witted, but it seems to me that staying here isn't really an option. Do you have anywhere else you can live until this gets sorted out?"


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« Reply #57 on: December 22, 2013, 03:20:23 pm »
"The Land Before Time? Sounds familiar..." Heather exclaimed. "Guess I watched it as a toddler."
Turning to Nick, she said. "Oh no problem, I know you would. Everybody would like to walk around without their guise..." Heather sighed. "Anyway, what's wrong with Sablewind? Is he a criminal or what?"
So Vincent needed shelter??? Heather felt really sorry for the velociraptor. "He doesn't have to sleep on the street, or does he?" Then a concept popped up in her head, as crazy and awkward it seemed to her... She had a small flat in some skyscraper only a block away from the shop she was working at. If Vincent slept on the sofa... "Nope, that's a bad idea..." Even though Heather's heart pushed her to speak up and offer her crush shelter at hers, her senses told her the very opposite. "I won't ask him but if he asks me... I'll say yes."
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« Reply #58 on: December 22, 2013, 04:50:01 pm »
Cailan sighed, standing outside the condos.  Shaking his head, he looked down, growling and punching the wall hard enough to tear through his guise and drawing blood.
"Damnit... Who am I kidding.  Maybe I am wrong... Maybe I should just give up...go back and submit myself to the council.. Let them kill me."
He said defeatedly, slumping against the wall dejectedly...

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« Reply #59 on: December 22, 2013, 06:23:58 pm »
Vincent nodded at Nicky. "That's EXACTLY my point... we've been lying to the humans for millions of years, and if they suddenly found out that everything they've basically believed is a lie... that's my concern."

"As for Sablewind..." the raptor turned to Heather now. "He's been branded an outlaw by the Council for desiring to expose our secret to the humans. I'm not... opposed to the idea, but I think it needs to be done... gradually... carefully... extremely carefully."

He sighed now, closing his eyes. This was such a headache. "I don't... really have an alternate place to stay. There's the office... but my partner usually sleeps there. So I guess I'll have to get a hotel until this place stops becoming a crime scene. How long will that take, detective?" Vincent inquired.

He then thought of something... and turned to Heather. "Heather... I REALLY hate to impose on you... but... you don't think I could stay with you, do you?" he asked, looking over at her now. "I really don't want to stay in a hotel... and hopefully this won't be too long." he said apologetically.

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