(2018-03-13) Lee's Diner Infiltration
Lee's Diner Infiltration
Summary: What begins as an investigation ends in blood and mayhem.
Date: IC Date (2018-03-13)
Related: Up, The Everbright Case
Player Characters: Audgrim, Bea, Sparky

Lee's Diner - Forks
A small brick building that has faded signs on the false second story front that it was once a hardware store. Now, the gold lettering in the windows clarifies, it is "Lee's Diner". Cramped, dingy and full of 70's orange, green and yellow decorations, the formica counters and mismatched tables are almost always full of loud locals.

Behind the counter, the open kitchen reveals a small, older Asian couple manning the industrial stove with methodical slowness. Eggs and bacon sizzle constantly, and this has left a thin haze of grease over just about everything. Some of the regulars at the counter like permanent fixtures even seem affected by this.

The menu consists of heavy diner classics like pancake stacks and burgers- both offered 24 hours a day. Only a small corner on the back is dedicated to 'lighter fare' such as tofu and canned fruit cocktail. There is clearly no calorie counting going on in this restaurant.

The walls are covered with graying pictures and newsclippings from Forks past, and the occasional small art piece with a note that it is for sale from a local artist. Soft country music plays over speakers hidden in the dusty, fake foliage scattered around.

Lee's Diner is pretty icon to Forks. It's a little old now, a little run down. But it's pretty iconic nonetheless. The walls are covered with graying pictures and newsclippings of Forks past, though less and less of it. Some pieces of Port Angeles news have slowly infiltrated wall space … just as Port Angeles has slowly started to infiltrate Forks, despite the distance.

The place has been shut down, which /greatly annoyed/ a regular, for the evening so it can be used for some "charitable" function.

The regular has been sitting in their car, fuming, for a good half an hour now.

It's a little eerie in the quiet.

Bea has made a point to bring jars of honey, some small baskets of fruit and veg, and a bucket of Gingerbread Witch Candy, leaving it outside with an overly apologetic sign about the inconvenience, and the hope that the treats will make up for it. She doesn't want to be upsetting people in her 'hood, after all. Sparing one last worried glance out the window at the fuming regular, she shakes her head and says to Audgrim and Sparky, "He'll get over it, for sure. Mr. Jones is just a bit grumpy sometimes, but just I'll make him a pie or something, and then he'll be fine." Focusing on the interior now, she sighs and frowns a little. "Just…where do we even start? Maybe if we check the office first? In case Mr. Lee has some, like…ancient artifact or something, and is just using it for like some kind of paperweight? And then we can just check the store rooms and whatever. " She's dressed for investigating…almost fancy-dress level, with a Sherlock style hat and a magnifying glass next to the chef's knife in her utility belt. She's even wearing hipster-glasses with no lenses (to make her feel smart, she'll tell people).

Audgrim arrived with Sparky, and helps unload and carry things inside. He has very new shiny clothes, but they have the same style as he always wears, if Bea notices. He squints out at Mr. Jones. "So we don't hit Mr. Jones, right?" He flexes his fingers and sniffs the air, inhaling sharply and closing his eyes for a moment, just preparing his senses to work a bit better. He's hit suddenly with the tang of grease and he sneezes.

"We don't even need to break into anything?" Sparky wonders, hands on her hips. She's not dressed up to investigate; she is dressed, at least. The elemental glances around the place curiously and drifts towards the kitchen, sniffing at the air and appraising the culinary equipment with a judgmental eye.

There isn't much of anything jumping out at them at first when it comes to investigating the office. It's a cramped space, and obviously an addition sometime after the place was built. They took some space from the back storage area and converted it to an office. It's relatively clean— in the way that a place that is usually messy get hurriedly cleaned up before guests arrive. Papers are all stacked up, jammed underneath Microeconomic books, and stuffed into desk draws.

The walls are covered with pictures of what appears to be one particular family. At leas four generations on the wall now.

A mix of men and women in various activities; BBQing, fishing, cooking, waitressing. Clearly the family that works here.

Nothing sticks out as an artifact.

Bea laughs at the questions, shaking her head, "Oh no, Mr. Jones doesn't need hitting. He's pretty nice, and at least he's got some good stories sometimes. And we definitely don't need to break in, since Mr. Lee just gave me the keys and took the day off with Mrs. Lee to go have like a nice day off for everyone, since I just promised to get them some fresh stuff." She unlocks the office and begins to poke around, looking for anything that might obviously be 'bird bait', more than going through paperwork, though she does occasionally seem to get distracted by pure, nosy snooping into the affairs of the Lee enterprise. One picture, in particular, catches her attention. "Huh. That is strange, and I never knew one of the Lee kids was a Lost like us…But just…" She leans in to squint at the picture, "Is she the bird lady everyone keeps talking about, I wonder?"

Audgrim looks around at everything and nothing. He has no talent for this sort of job, but least he's a Beast so he sees, hears and smells well. He sniffs the paper piles, just in case. He crawls under the desk and even lifts it up a bit. The floor is poked at, in case there's lose boards underneath. Nothing. He randomly pulls out drawers of a standing file drawer set, and sniffs in them; his tail turns still and he carefully pulls out one single lone blackbird feather, showing it to the other two. "Maybe she is."

"Huh," Sparky says without a whole lot of emotion. Her searching has turned up nothing, and she is pretending that she is disinterested now, although she's quite interested in the photo and the feather. "A connection," she says. But she herself is empty handed when it comes to clues. There's nothing to show on her part.

The picture is clearly of a changeling woman. A beast. Blackbird feathers, a beakish nose. She looks like your fairly average changeling woman. And definitely NOT an eldritch other being that is Keeper like.

"I wonder if she escaped from our nasty friend," Sparky muses as she peers at the photograph. "Birds of a feather and all that. Think we could talk to her?"

Bea shrugs and bites her lip, "Maybe so, but even if we can find her, then I am starting to think birds are like foxes, and a little bit sneaky and maybe hard to trust. But still…" She pulls out her phone and sends off a text to Mr and Mrs. Lee, asking them if they've got the contact information for the woman in the picture, "I will ask, and see if maybe we can find her, since at least probably she can talk to birds better than me, and might know why they're messing around, and especially if she likes Lee's enough to have her picture here, and might have said something to the birds that were just hanging around here being creepy and not even chatting when I tried to be nice or anything." Anyone, even a bird, that won't chat to Bea is clearly someone she has no love of. She pokes around a bit more as she waits to see if the elder Lees respond to her inquiry.

"I am tired of birds," Audgrim says, which is what every Lost in this town probably has thought or said at this point. He squints at the picture too, and sniffs again at the feather, carefully. "Think Sparky is right, yes ask Lee people. Did you see, the birds are not even here now, outside. I did not make any wind this time so they did not go flying away cause of wind. Maybe the birds go with her, they are watching her?"

"That was my thought too," Sparky adds, pointing at Audgrim. "Maybe it's not the diner that's key here, but the daughter."

Bea nods, "Oh, for sure it is her, since really, Mr. and Mrs. Lee are pretty boring, really, and probably wouldn't have any magic mirrors or rings or crowns or anything." Does Bea look a little disappointed by this? Yeah she does. A glance down at her phone and she shrugs, poking around some more though it's clear at this point she's just plain snooping. Why was it that their latest waitress got fired? Who's doing their fruit and veg deliveries, inquiring busybodies want to know!

Ping! A text comes back. Responding with a phone number, but also wanting to know why Bea wants their daughter's information. Meanwhile her fussing around comes up with th following answers: A local farming co-op does their fruit and veg deliveries, and their last waitress was fired for being caught making out with her boyfriend while on the clock.

…outside there is sudden banging on the windows.

Audgrim does something else; he sits down on the office chair and puts his feet up on the desk, taking out his phone. "I will ask Google," he declares, looking smug. He types in LEE and gets about 2 billion hits. Tries LEE BIRD WOMAN annd that doesn't help much. He starts again and then shoots to his feet in alarm, moving over to the office door and peeking out through it.

Sparky wanders over to the windows and looks out, rearranging whatever blinds or curtains necessary to get the job done.

Bea responds to the text, a thank you and an explanation that she'd run into her a few times in the past, and hadn't seen her for a while, wanted to reconnect. Even when lying via text, she blushes a little, but luckily the medium allows her some dignity…particularly when she yelps and drops her phone at the banging. "What's that?!" He hand is on her chef's knife, ready to whip it out, though she almost immediately starts rationalizing as she moves to look out the window with Sparky, "It's probably just Mr. Jones again. He can be alittle, mmm, what's the word? Persistent?"

It is Mr. Jones, but he looks more frightened than hungry. He bangs on the doors shouting through the glass, "Let me in!"

…in the parking lot two big, black SUVS have pulled up. And mean wearing purple and green are getting out of the cars. Thuggish looking men in expensive clothing.

"That's the feather gang!" Audgrim says, hovering behind Bea and Sparky, peeking out the window. He stares at Mr. Jones, as he isn't sure he should let him in, but in the end he moves to open the door. "They, we think, work for bird monster."

Sparky promptly unlocks the door and lets in Mister Jones, because she doesn't want bird people minions to eat him, then quickly closes and relocks the door. "You're going to make it hard for us to set up for our charity event," she grumbles at him, though the way she shifts shows off a distracting amount of cleavage. "But I guess you don't want to hang out with those fuckers in the parking lot."

Oh, well…That gets Bea's wings all a-buzz, "Oh? Like those ones that were causing trouble a while ago? And are making trouble all over Port Angeles?" Her knife /does/ come out now, as she hurries to let Jones in, and more importantly, let herself out. "Go on in, Mr. Jones, and just you make yourself comfortable. Don't you worry, we'll take care of these trouble-makers for sure." Bea looks very serious. Trouble doesn't come to her beloved Forks without her putting up a fight. She's out the door and glaring at the men with her more ferocious (though admittedly not very scary) scowl, feet planted wide. "You jerks just buzz off now, or you'll have to deal with me, and you don't want that kind of trouble. I am sure about that."

Bea's phone starts buzzing, as if alarmed … oh, no that's someone calling. Probably to be ignored.

The gang members are still piling out of the cars. One of them pulling out a bat as he steps out. He bounces it up and down in his palm. He smiles toward Bea, "Hello there. Whatcha doing there? Y'know they haven't paid their protection fees lately…"

Joining Bea outside, after pushing Mr Jones further into the building, Audgrim's posture is lazy, but straight and he rolls his neck a little. He doesn't grin, nor smile at first but crosses his arms as he stands next to Bea. Most of the time, Audgrim is laid back and charming. But like most Beasts he can put out the intimidation if he wants to. Now he grins. The wides, most feral grin, showing off white teeth and a near crazy gleam in his eyes. "We are here. They're not. Best move along."

Bea scowls at the birdman and claims, "They're under /my/ protection, and just about everyone in Forks is, so buzzzzzzz off." Her 'buzzz' has a very strange tone to it, loud and penetrating, and soon enough…bees start appearing. Buzzing from all directions. One of the benefits of Bea's reeputation in Forks is that her 'save the bees' campaign has been particularly effective, giving her buggy allies nearby in most parts of the town. And now, they've come to her aid, heading for the talkative Bird Gang member.

Some performers eat fire. Some wear it briefly. That's what it looks like Sparky is doing when she gets out a cigarette lighter and runs her hands over it casually. Flames lick her fingers and she looks immensely self satisfied. This might be why she wears a lot of leather. "Do you wanna play tag?" she coos at the one with the bat, sliding her lighter into her pocket before rubbing her hands together so that the flames grow a bit.

Two of the gang members are sufficiently freaked out that they immediately hop back into their SUV. Leaving the third to look over at them in confusion. "Where are you—" He whips back around and pulls a gun, aiming it at Bea. "You know that the fuck off. We're here to have a nice, calm conversation with you." His gun bounces toward Sparky when she literally lights herself on fire.

The one with the bat hesitates a moment, and 'fight or flight' flashes through his eyes… And it seems like he's going to pick fight. He swings his bat in the air aggressively before him, as bright spots suddenly flash around him… Like the sun glaring off of metal. As if he were calling on a summer mantle.

Audgrim has been patient, waiting to see how this unfolds. But soon as violence begins, he explodes into action. Those new clothes? Yeah, they break again as he grows almost to twice his size in muscle mass, ripping coat, shirt and pants. He leaps right at the man with the gun and punches his hand into the man's shoulder, claws first and then rips them out. He growls and sprays himself with some of the blood, trying to block the others from the gun in the process.

Seeing his buddy get clawed the fuck up, the last gang member, leaps forward, pulling a crobar from the dash and smashing it as hard as he can against the side of Audgrim's face. "You fucker!"

Bea yells to Audgrim, "Don't kill him, he wants to talk!" Leaving the bees to buzz around with little direction for the moment, just adding a bit of chaos, she throws herself at the bat-wielding fellow, despite her words, slashing at him with her 'definitely not intended for this purpose' chef's knife, exclaiming, "I'm gonna butterfly you like a chicken, you jerk!" That she actually manages to draw blood at all is rather surprising given her theatrical style of chopping.

Sparky is giving the guy with the crowbar the warmest unplanned massage he's ever had, and of course, she herself is impervious to fire. "Feel free to run at any time," she suggests as she goes for his face with her fists of flame.

The man with the gun is bleeding EVERYWHERE. He lets out a gurgling scream, and quickly pulls his gun the rest of the way out. Hip firing at Audgrim and completely missing him, shooting the parking lot instead. Meanwhile, the man with the bat winds it up hard and swings it at Bea's head with such a smash that there is a >crunch<.

Audgrim has a long bleeding gash at the side of his head where the crowbar hit him. He sees Sparky and Bea in the corner of his eyes, braces for impact as the shot goes off and doesn't feel anything; he isn't hit. He proceeds to punch the gun-man right in the kidney but isn't using his claws this time. He listens to Bea, and isn't keen on killing anyone, no matter they seem to be trying to kill them. The wounded thug crumples to the ground and Augrim is already swinging to face the next threat.

The man with the crobar screams when he's suddenly lit on fire. He whirls around and smashes his crobar at the ifrit, only to catch himself a little more on fire. There is more screaming.

Bea stumbles back at the blow, shaking her head a couple times and wiping the blood from her eyes before lunging in again with a primal screech. She's not got any attempts at witty threats this time, it's just a purely primal urge to attack the thing that's hurting her and her friends.

Audgrim jumps right into the next fray, punching one of the thugs at the back of the neck - it might stun the man a bit, but he's not down for the count. With clothes all bloodied and ruined, and a long gash bleeding, he looks a mess - but so does everyone here at the moment. Mr. Jones in there must be having quite the horrow show.

Bea has definitely hit fight or flight mode, though she seems a bit disoriented from that hit to the noggin. She lunges again at the gang member, but misses him completely, stumbling over her own feet and letting out a curse that, in any other curcimstances, would probably raise an eyebrow given how rare an occurance it is.

Audgrim is the one mopping up - proper "kill stealer"-mode. He takes a long fast stride, hip and leg swinging as his booted foot kicks the thug on the ground in the head. He growls down at the man, then does start to take off his ruined coat to throw it on him.

One black SUV sits in the middle of the parking lot, while the other takes off at high speeds and speeds off down the street…. And three men in purple and green are unconscious on the ground. Bleeding, singed, and slashed up pretty bad.

Bea's phone makes a tinkling noise to alert her of a voice mail.

Sparky blows out her hands as casual as if this is just something one does. "Ugh. I feel bruised. I'm going to have to call a medic, ain't I? Gods, look at you. All banged up," she remarks.

Bea blinks, pushing blood out of her eyes again and staring at the men, breathing hard and requiring a moment to get out of her primal fight mode. When she realizes they're all out, she mutters, "I just have some blushberries for them, once we've got 'em tied up or something…And you too, if you need."The last an offer to Sparky as she talks of medics and such. And then she pokes at her phone, ignoring her own wounds for now, though she's clearly a little woozy, wobbling on her feet as she pulls up the voicemail and puts it on speaker.

There are two voicemails waiting for Bea, from the same female voice, "Quick, go out the back. Down the alleyway, and to the right, there's a gate that's still unlocked there."

And then a minute or two later, "Okay, you're either still alive or dead. Do me a favor and leave me alone if you're still alive. You're coming here has made them look at me again, and I just want to live my life. You're putting me in danger. /Leave. Me. Alone./"


Audgrim isn't doing this out of the goodness of his heart - he couldn't care less if they died, per se. But he's loathe to /let/ a man die, so he puts that fire out, checks to see the two on the ground are still breathing, and then turns his attention on Bea who seems to be the worst off. He rips his shirt into a bandage and then promptly ties it around Bea's head, least it will stop some of the blood. In fact, he seems to know what he's doing. "We'll be alright. It'll be alright," he tells Sparky, even managing a grin. "But suppose we need to move these guys to somewhere else, fast."

Bea is a bit impatient with Audgrim's attempts at first aid, but she suffers the effort…and then is on the move, following the directions of the first message curiously, even as she tries to call the number the messages came from. While she waits on an answer, or an answering machine, she calls to the others, "Just look in my bag, there are some berries there, and a couple candies. But don't give them the sweets, since for sure they don't deserve any treats. But if they are dead, then still we can take them to my garden."

The otherside does not answer.

Sparky starts rifling through their pockets looking for car keys. There is, after all, a handy vehicle for her to steal.

Audgrim watches Bea move off, a bit confused. But he nods and starts rifling through the backpack and proceeds to try to feed some of the fruit to the two men so they won't bleed to death. "Sparky? We can use that car to move them, right? Maybe back to Bea's farm. Need to talk to them later."

Sparky swipes the car keys, unlocks the car, then moves to help Audgrim move the hostages to the vehicle. "Do you have some place to put these folks when we get where we're going? Are you a secret dominatrix with a myriad of kinky restraints available, handy for restraining these fools?" she wonders of Bea.

Bea leaves a message at the generic voicemail she gets to, "We survived, because those guys aren't so tough. And so you can know I can keep you safe, if just you come find me and at least talk to me. You are from Forks, and you are one of us, and if you are on our side, then I will protect you, and my friends will too. Come to my farm, or tell me where to meet you that you feel safe, and I will protect you, and not charge anything. And even if you don't, then you can at least know your parents are safe." This message given, she hangs up the phone with a sigh and turns back to Sparky with an admittedly weak laugh, "Oh, I am not that kind of Spring, but I have a basement with a strong door and some good rope to keep them from going anywhere." She snags one of the blushberries for herself as she picks up her bag, taking a moment to call into the cafe, "Mr Jones, its safe out here now, and we're just going to take these guys to the police station, but you should go home, since there are still some of these troublemakers out and around."

Mr. Jones has been helping himself to some french fries. Are they even heated? Who cares. He chews on them and stares at Bea for several long moments and just says, "Yuuuppp…" And then moves off to his car. Just a regular night in Forks… Yup.

Audgrim heaves one of the men into the backseat and the other one in the trunk, with the help of Sparky. "Assholes," he notes, having learned some bad words over these last few months. "Bea, who is on the phone?" He gives Mr. Jones a cheerful wave and a thumbs up.

"I'm going to need directions, then," Sparky says, getting in the car, starting the engine, and checking out the radio presets.

Bea watches Jones head off, making sure he actually does leave, instead of lingering around, before locking the door to the diner and heading over to help the other two with the gang members. "Phone? Oh, just the bird lady. She was scared…I think she was watching us, but then ran away." Bea replays the messages on speaker, so the other two can hear. "I tried to call her back, but didn't get any answer. Just I will try again, and talk with Mr and Mrs Lee. If she is in danger, then I told her we could help." She gives Sparky directions to her farm, then heads over to her ice cream van to lead the way there.

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