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Dec 10 - 08:50:42
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New Arrivals Started by: GavinAndTaraByrne on Jun 13, '18 14:35

There was movement in the streets of Philadelphia- movement that was evidence of chaotic and persistent life, even in the face of the Depression. Downtrodden men and women shuffled along in the grey of the morning, either on their way to jobs or desperately seeking them. The street urchins of Philadelphia, like their brethren all around the world, were always on the move to one place or another.

In the massive sea of humanity that lurched through the streets, there were two exceptions: a man and a woman waited motionless, watching the crowd that washed through the streets near the docks. The woman was perched, balanced and seated on top of a wooden fence, leaning forward and resting an elbow on her crossed legs. She was wearing a green blouse with tan sleeves, brown slacks, and leather boots that looked better suited to a forest than the city. A man leaned on the fence next to her, standing and resting his forearms on it as he scanned the crowd. He was wearing similar boots and pants, with a brown shirt that looked like it had seen better days. There were a few similarities between them that caught the eye, such as the same shade of chestnut hair, a similar height around 5'8, or their athletic build, but their familial connection was most obvious through their identical expression as they watched the crowd. His blue eyes and her brown eyes seemed to relentlessly pick apart each individual who fell under their gaze. 

After what felt like an hour of just sitting and watching, they sighed in synchronization. He spoke first, breaking the ice as always.

"I'm bored."

"I know."

"We can't just sit around and wait for something to happen to us. We're hunters. We need to, you know, hunt shit."

"There's no sense in charging around blindly. Better to get the lay of the land."

"Lay of the land?"

The man pushed himself up to a standing position as he continued to speak.

"Lay of the land? We're just watching a bunch of nobodies trudge to work."

The woman started pointing and speaking before he even finished.

"That man over there is a dock foreman, running a crew; there's almost certainly a connection there for us through the unions. And that guy over there is selling something or meeting somebody shady; he's been strolling the same block four or five times. He's either connected or he's a cop. Besides, we already put out some feelers through the bars."

She paused, reciting from memory what she'd told the bartenders.

"Man and woman looking for work as a team. Action, security, acquisitions, tracking, and a wide variety of skills. Find us at the docks."

The man raised a skeptical eyebrow.

"You really think they remembered all that shit you told them?"

She shrugged as she replied.

"A good recommendation can be worth a lot. Lots of people could be hiring these days. Just need to ask. I'll tell you what... wait here with me for a few hours and see if anyone finds us. If not, we'll got knock down some doors."

He was silent as she continued to speak.

"Please, Gavin?"

After a while, he sighed and went back to leaning against the fence.

"Two hours, Tara. At most. But I bet you a buck no one'll show."

Her grin was visible from the other side of the street as they both returned to scanning the crowd.

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A day of stress and a considerable number of things to think about had lead to this moment. The wild licked at his hair and the sounds of the site strained on his headache. Jack was getting older, wiser to the world. Where he had previously disregarded any true commitments to a cause other than his own, he now found importance in nothing else but that of his employer. 

He still had not found that woman though.

Mezzo was dressed in smart attire, for once. Though had donned a jacket which less than complimented his professional look. Still a child at heart. A firm stance on the dock looking out across the rolling waters, his brooding gaze would meet any who passed him yet did not break from his stare. Workers, would be workers and immigrants loitered around him, each a brimming with differing levels of potential. There wasn't much Jack could do though, recruitment wasn't his thing.

There were many number of things he could be doing, though. He had some business with Star which needed completion. He had also left the door open, briefly, and Rubix had escaped the HQ. Unbeknownst to Jack, the pup was not restricted by doors. If he wanted out, he would get out. No, as far as Jack was concerned he had lost the city dog and had a long night of searching ahead of him.

He broke his stare, finally, turning to leave. His route took him past a fence where there was a couple. One perched, the other stood lethargically against it.

No time like the present to start looking.

"'Scuse me guys, have you seen a dog come this way?"

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Tara looked at JackMezzo as he spoke, wondering if one of the bartenders had mentioned them to this man, and started planning a wry, clever response to his question. "Most men are dogs, so we've only seen a couple hundred", perhaps? She was considering whether he'd take it too hostile when the sound of her brother's voice instantly furrowed her brow.

"Seen a few, yea. What'd it look like? And if you're paying, then I'll find it. Because chasing some mutt around would be a giant improvement over this goddamn day."

Tara said nothing, but slid off the fence and looked at the young man who'd approached them.

"Can I ask what your name is, sir? My name is Tara; this is my brother Gavin. We're new in town."

She stepped forward, adroitly positioning herself between the two men so that only the slightest twitch revealed the elbow that had been thrown into her brother's side.

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Jack cocked his head, mouth ajar as he had been about to answer the first question, when he found himself fronted by the young brunette. He stammered for a moment, searching for new words which had originally been intended for the man she called Gavin.

"Mezzo, I mean Jack, Jack Mezzo. Sorry. I often get ahead of myself."

A mental note got pinned to the stack of mental notes to mind his manners.

"And yes, yes I can pay you. Unless you already have a sponsor. I wouldn't want to step on anyone's toes."

He raised a brow and looked between the pair. Something about them screamed 'trouble', and it was either irresponsibility or desire for excitement which pressed Jacks interest in Gavin and Tara. 

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Tara's eyebrow twitched upward.

"Sponsor? You mean you're...?"

She evaluated him again. He was young. Their age, maybe even younger. She was expecting a few bucks for finding a dog? But sponsoring? If this kid was throwing that word around, then she knew a couple things about him already. One, he was very well connected to the business they were looking to get into. And two, he was either indiscreet or pretending to be. Tara had planned on finding them a sponsor, of course. Entirely independent operators tended to have a short lifespan. Gavin, as usual, was already talking; all he heard was "pay you" and his eyes flickered.

"What's it look like, huh? Big dog? Little dog? Color? Any kind of collar?"

Tara flashed a smile to accompany her brother's questions, adding in a couple questions of her own to accompany it.

"Sponsoring is an interesting word to use there, JackMezzo. That's sort of what we're looking for. Quality work. Not afraid to get our hands dirty?"

As she said the word "dirty", Tara internally cursed herself for skipping a bath the previous evening. She increased the wattage on her smile to make up for it, while Gavin starting expanding and compressing his hands to ascertain the size of the dog.

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Jack looked back and forth. A slight synchronization between the two made for an interesting interaction, he suddenly found himself applying one hundred percent of his concentration to maintain focus on them. He considered himself a handful at times, but these two...

"Err, ... like this?" He held up his hands, completely forgetting what size matched Rubix or what type of dog he is.

After correcting his measurement slightly, he looked back to Tara.

"Si, I mean yes, sponsoring. I shouldn't really be paying you if you're working for someone else. Sounds like you're free agents though?"

He posed the question, still unsure where he was going with this. He didn't feel at all like he should be taking people on, especially not when he still had his own agenda to fulfill. This would benefit the Philly operation though, and he did care about that. Taking two people on at once could be interesting, but Jack enjoyed a challenge, everything else was boring.

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Tara tapped her brother on the shoulder.

"We'll find your dog. My brother was the best hunter in Newfoundland."

And I'm not so bad myself; let's just ignore the fact that finding a dog in a city is an entirely different task.

"We're new in town, yes, and entirely free agents. We know how dangerous it is to stay unaffiliated. A sponsorship, even a loose one, would certainly take a load of worries off my mind."

Gavin chuffed muttering something along the lines of "like that ever lasts" before speaking up himself.

"We'll find this dog of yours, JackMezzo. After that, you can buy me a few drinks and the two of you can talk all you'd like about business. Anything else I need to know to track him down?"

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Jack felt his mind start to clear from the overcast initially clouding his thoughts. It had been a long day, maybe one day he'd talk about it. Maybe it would be with these two, maybe they'd be sat on these docks years from now looking for their own associates with him. It still felt odd as they were roughly the same age, and whether it was his intention on not, Jack was now firmly in the same line of work as his mother.

His unconscious smile slowly turned to a scowl as further thoughts became clearer again. He raised his brow at realization that Rubix was more than capable of looking after himself, and that he most likely had Jack open the door for him, like some sort of puppy butler.

He sighed, shook his head and offered out his hand.

"How about we get that drink now?"

They shook hands and began walking back into the city. As they turned, Jack watched Rubix dart through an alley with a wallet in his mouth, hounded by a line of the local PD.

"So, what did you used to hunt..."

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Gavin and Tara shot identical looks at each other. First offering a job... then offering them a conversation? Tara was tempted to think they'd done something wrong, whereas Gavin figured JackMezzo was just thirsty, impressed, or both. Besides, Jack there was looking a little worn out. Gavin slapped him on the back, hard.

"What's wrong, Jackie? Seems like you just got tired pretty quick. Let's go get that drink, huh? Maybe all you need is a couple people to help you out? We can tell you all about ourselves, and you can tell us more about this dog business if you change your mind."

As they headed towards the Old City, Gavin and Tara flanked Jack as they kept pace with him. Tara tried to resist a triumphant smile, thinking of that dollar that her brother now owed her. It was hard being right all the time.

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Star was incredibly distracted as she shuffled papers, waiting for JackMezzo to return so she could chat business with him. That kid had his head in the clouds half the time and Starshine was simply trying to figure out how to nail his boots to the floor. 

Wherever Jack had gone, he had also let Rubix out. The pup was probably happily frolicking around looking cute and begging for scraps which wasn't a problem per se, but it meant that the HQ was quiet and her thoughts were too noisy. Perhaps she just needed to beg off early and finish the paperwork in the morning. Tonight seemed like the perfect night to let her hair down, drink some tea, and maybe read a good book on the porch. Kittie wouldn't be home until much later so she had the afternoon and evening to herself. 

Star jammed a few papers into her leather satchel and tucked her chair under the maple desk, turning the light off before closing the door to her office. Taking her hat from the rack, she set it on her head, pulling the brim over her forehead to protect her from the late afternoon sun. At least the walk would be nice and soon, Star was on her way home, blithely not paying attention to where she was walking until Rubix darted across her path. As she tried to avoid the puppy, she tripped on her heels and pitched forward, wobbling to catch her balance as she toppled into Jack's shoulder and knocked him galley-west. After the brief confusion over Star's clumsiness, she managed to pull herself upright and brush herself off, no worse for the wear for the most part. 

"Jack, are you okay? I'm sorry I got so distracted I didn't see you there and I tripped over Rubix and, oh, hello."

Star stopped, wide-eyed as she got a good look at the pair that had been chatting with Jack. 

"Were you on your way somewhere? I'm sorry I suppose I should let you go then, I'm just on my way home." 

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