How to Make Friends and Influence People

Bayswater Road - Westminster - London

Home of the 'West End'. Here, the famous Hyde Park sits, as well as Hyde Park Corner. This area has pubs, shops, and restaurants. Marble Arch and Lancaster Gate undergrounds service the area.


Characters

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Corrie Aidan Gideon

Damp nights are nothing surprising in London in the Spring. A light rain falls over the city, causing the air to slowly cool. The heat from the day still remains on the streets which gives a thin fog rolling over the pavement.

At least this is what is happening up above.

The opposite is almost true for the Undercity. The air, while cool, is a bit dry this evening. Underfoot is a layer of water that causes small splooshing noises as people walk along. Mid week, the area Corrie has traversed to is not all that busy. It sees the majority of its business on the weekends — at least according to the note that was left by Glynis.

"Not that much further," she comments as she glances up.

The witch she's seeking is most definitely not someone a Kavanaugh would likely ever be caught dead (or alive) talking to. A darker practitioner — but it would seem that she's the only one able to create the amulet she's seeking.

-

Escaping the damp London chill is a welcome respite for Aidan this evening. Variances in temperature don't affect him, but the general, pervasive heaviness of the fog and chill air is enough to bring down anyone's spirits, even those of a vampire. He's well and fed and sated, whatever he says about the blood brothels of the Undercity he's not entirely opposed to them and they do have their uses. That bit of business taken care of, he can now set out to do what it was that he wishes to do. And that's follow up on a lead regarding the little package he received on his doorstep not too long ago.

The vampire is dressed casually tonight — blue jeans, dark shirt, leather jacket and a hat dipped down low on his head. The idea is to blend, not stand out, and fine tailored linen and Italian loafers do seem to shine like a beacon down here. The person he's seeking isn't too far away now, not according to the directions he scared out of a baby vampire. Didn't even get to torture him, what sort of fun is that? Aidan thinks he might go back and stake him later because the idiot is bringing shame to all real vampires everywhere.

Across the way, he catches a glimpse of red and tracks it with his eyes. It's habit, not because he's seeking the little witchling out, but because she's on his radar now and not in a good way. Aidan doesn't expect it to be her, and gives a start of surprise when he realizes it is.

"Well, the night is looking better already." With that, he slips across the way, weaving in between the bodies to plant himself quite firmly in her path. Doesn't say a word, just waits for her to turn back to her path and recognize that she's going to walk into a man-sized wall.

-

As though she feels him before she spots him (though that is indeed an impossibility — at least for her), Corrie wraps her sweater a little more tightly about herself. Cinching it tightly, she gives her head a slight shake. "Tch. Scaring yourself silly," she mutters beneath her breath.

According to the directions that were left for her it's really only one further spread, and she'll find the woman. Setting her steps back into proper order she continues on without bothering to look up. Keeping her eyes averted, especially down here, means that there's less of a chance of her needing to run off before finishing her task.

Pesky sorcerers.

Which is when she crashes right into said man-sized wall, landing on the damp ground with a slight oof.

"Sorry," she says politely. But it's one of those curt politeness' that are reserved for those who are obviously in the wrong.

-

Aidan is almost — almost — tempted to move aside when he realizes that the silly little witch has no intention of looking up properly. It's a good strategy, he has to grudgingly admit, it helps avoid the possibility of getting on someone's bad side by looking at them the wrong way. On the other hand, it could be argued that not looking around is just as dangerous. Case in point.

Aidan gives her a once over, thinking that it's a pity that she isn't wearing a skirt of some sort to at least make this a bit more amusing. He can admit that she's still cute when dressed down so neatly, even if he's still undecided about what to do about her. At least he can play nice while making up his mind.

Aidan extends a hand, leaning forward a bit, "Oh, that was entirely my bad. I really should pay better attention to where I'm going."

-

Corrie takes the hand without thinking about it. It's not until she's hauled herself back to her feet and attempted to dry her backside off with a quick brushing, that she realizes who it is that she's run into.

"Bloody hell."

A step back is immediately taken to create a bit of distance between them. "Imagine bumping into you here. I'd have thought the Undercity was large enough for the both of us without wandering into the same circles…" It's not as if she's waltzing into the vampire areas (at least she hopes not — she's only just come to terms with their existence in the city).

-

"Imagine," Aidan mimics with a surprisingly solicitious smile. "They do say that the whole world is a global community these days. Maybe they're right."

Here, beneath the city without a million eyes on them and the spectre of 'appearances' and 'proper behavior' hanging over him, Aidan doesn't pay much mind to human social niceties. A single large step forward carries him back into Corrie's personal space, close enough to lean in and whisper in her ear, "I certainly never expected to see my favorite witch down here." She smells good, fruity with a hint of spice, and it's all he can do to not take a deep whiff.

-

"I highly doubt that is a good thing," Corrie retorts with a slight scoff. "If you'd step aside, I'll be on my way."

Narrowing her blue eyes a little, she looks as though she's going to stand her ground. Face off against him. Watson is likely right, I won't be able to get a spell off before he breaks my neck, but I'll sure as hell try.

"Maybe they are, though I care little for this sort of coincidence."

-

The little witchling has a pair, Aidan thinks. She stands her ground, which is either incredibly brave or incredibly stupid considering that she knows exactly what he is and even more importantly, what he can do to her. He does give points for bravado however.

"God, you are just soo cute," Aidan compliments, blue eyes squinting around the corners. "All fiesty and girl power!" He rolls his shoulders back on the last, clearly amused by smaller woman in front of him. Corrie doesn't realize it, but Aidan amused is far safer than Aidan annoyed, because an amused Aidan doesn't tend to snap necks and rip out throats indiscriminately.

He hasn't moved out of her way, and it's probably becoming clear to her that he doesn't intend to do so anytime soon. "So," Aidan folds his arms across his chest and tilts his head, "Are we really going to do this again?"

-

The compliment, whether true or merely due to his amusement causes her to blink. It's been ages since she was called cute. "I'm so thrilled to be able to provide you with a spot of amusement." Though I'd much rather not be amusing you.

He may be amused, but Corrie is annoyed. While she has no ability to snap necks or rip out throats, she can defend herself if need be (she hopes).

"You're not going to move, are you? Do you honestly take that much joy out of driving me mad?"

-

Pursing his lips, the vampire shifts his eyes around as though pretending to give the matter heavy consideration. As his gaze wanders back to hers, he asks, "Is this a true false question or multiple choice? I perform so much better with multiple choice." Cheeky. And no, he hasn't answered her question, but the answer should be obvious. Corrie has, for the interim, gained Aidan's company.

He does like that she stands her ground, probably figuring to fire a spell at him at the first sign of danger. The first sign of overt danger, because the witch seems to know that simply being in his presence and on his bad side is dangerous.

Another step brings him even closer to her, enough that he can feel the warm, human heat radiating from her body, can hear the drumming of her heart in her chest and the slow inhalations and exhalations of breath. Aidan's hands land on her waist. It's impertinent and rude, far too intimate and he doesn't care. "There. I've moved."

-

A leap of fear will be detected in the beat of her heart when he behaves in such an intimate manner toward her. Corrie's eyes narrow and she brings a hand up to slap him across the face for being so cheeky — only to stop herself before actually executing it. Clenching her fist, she exhales a frustrated whoosh of air and drops her fist to her side.

She may have gained the vampire's company, but that doesn't mean she's going to be anything but feisty or neutral.

"Unfortunately, in the wrong direction. Care to try again?"

-

The slight rise and fall of her hand doesn't go unnoticed, however it's the spike in the racing of her heart that captures and holds Aidan's attention. He chuckles, a low, rolling smokey sound and tugs the witch to him, melding his body against hers. Dropping his head, Aidan presses his lips directly against her ear. He speaks, the words a soft, knowing cadence. "You really need to calm down, Corrie. If I was going to kill you, you'd already be dead." It's not a warning, or even a threat. It's simple fact. "I think though," Aidan lifts one hand to stroke her hair, "that I'm going to let you live."

For as long as she amuses him, naturally.

-

No one will fault her (excepting herself) for the surprised squeak that Corrie elicits when she's suddenly finding herself pressed against him. When his head drops toward hers, her reaction is almost humorous. For all of a second, she freezes. Then the hands come up to shove him away.

Too close to her neck for her liking.

Her heart gives another small leap, though this time it's from a mixture of anger and excitement. "Glad to know it. Now if you don't mind…?" That's when she tries to push past him and continue on her way.

-

It's hard to budge a vampire who doesn't want to be budged, and in this Aidan is no exception. However, he does step back, if only because he wants to do so and he's more than happy to give the witch a moment of false security. In his mind though, she's a little mouse and the cat is nowhere near done playing yet.

"Oh, but I do mind." Aidan's arm snakes out, pressed against her abdomen to impede her progress. "I thought we were just getting reacquainted." Shining blue eyes look down at her, dancing with mischief, "You were the one who said you prefer the physical to mind games." His mouth curls up, and there might is definitely an undercurrent of challenge in his voice.

-

Caught.

Corrie looks rather perturbed. Irritated. Her brows knit in frustration and she bites her lip to keep from slewing out a string of obscenities.

Five, four, three, two, one… Taking a deep breath, she forces a smile. A way to keep herself from allowing him to get under her skin. "I did say that, which I meant for that situation. I'm much more fond of experiencing things as opposed to thinking I did. I hate having my mind screwed with." That much is obvious, even without her saying so.

"We were getting reacquainted. I decided we'd spent enough time together."

-

It doesn't take a genuis to see that the witch is displeased. Aidan can feel her ire in the tensing of her muscles and the resistance of her body. Not that she's been open or receptive to physical contact, but there is certainly a change. Again, he gives her points for trying so hard to … what? Not provoke him? Slip past him and escape into the Undercity? What are you up to, little witchling?

"I don't think so. I mean, we've barely chatted at all." He moves gracefully and fluidly, spinning and turning so that he falls into step beside her, his arm wrapped around her waist. It's possessive and claiming, implying a closeness that most certainly isn't there. "But, tell me, what parts do you like having screwed with?"

-

The witch is so displeased because she cannot precisely go shopping for what she needs while he's with her. It would defeat the purpose of such a talisman. Should have waited for Jean to come along. Would have been more powerful. Would have — right, he has no idea who I really am. I hope.

"Are you always this crass, or are you simply attempting to see how far you can push me before I attempt to lash out at you?" Not that it would work.

"It's not as though this is a wonderfully charming place to have a tete-a-tete."

-

"Ask around," Aidan drawls, "I'm always this crass." It's easy to keep pace with her, his arm around her waist, almost as if they're a couple out for a stroll and not … well, he doesn't want to say enemies, but they certainly aren't friends. It's only to be expected though, considering that he's only just decided since seeing her again that he isn't going to kill her.

The hand around her waist gives it a squeeze, as if to remind her that he's there and this close to her; as though any kind of reminder is needed. "Oh, there are plenty of places that are quiet and off the beaten path down here. I doubt that you've warmed up to me enough that you'd want to take a detour to any of them, however."

-

"I'll bear that in mind then," Corrie says with a roll of her eyes. Again she attempts to make a break for it, and again she's pretty much trapped. Her irritation is continuing to grow, but she grudgingly walks with him.

"I doubt that I'm actually going to go somewhere quite that quiet with you at this juncture." Not that she actually wants to go somewhere public with him either. All things considered that's just as dangerous. So she starts to turn, toward a section she would never dare to go normally. "This way then." Furthest away from her contact. "There's a bench not far down." Not public, but not too private either as people may still wander by.

-

"I think you might be warming to me."

Aidan thinks nothing of the sort. The witch is far from relaxed and that really just won't do. He likes his … conquests … frisky, but there comes a point when the over the board animosity and fear gets really old. I told her that I'm not going to kill her. That should be enough, shouldn't it?

"Oooh, a bench," Aidan sings songs. "Just like real actual friends." He allows her to lead, despite his sarcasm, simply because he's still curious enough to wonder what's going on behind those pretty blue eyes. For now.

-

"Over my dead body."

Beat.

"And if you dare say that can be arranged, I may just pop you in the mouth." Corrie glares at him, makes a face and continues on her way. "Yes, except without the tea, or the actual friendship."

As she continues on her way she relaxes — somewhat. She's still tense and irritated but as long as she's got some control (i.e. their location) it seems to appease her a little. "Why are you so interested in a chat anyhow?"

-

The response draws a laugh from the vampire, a genuine rolling bark of amusement. The witch is so much more fun when she's spitting fire and has her claws out. "Be careful there, I might just be the sort who happens to like my women violent." Aidan's voice is low and dry, suggestive and dirty.

There's a beat while he considers her question, and then the matter is given a bored, dismissive shrug. "I so enjoyed our conversation last time, that I just want to finish it."

-

"Really? In that case I'll pat your head like an impertinent child." Hmph. Corrie crosses her arms over her chest, and continues on in silence until she finds the bench. She waits for him to take a seat even before she settles onto the bench, at the far side away from him. Her body is turned in a way that is not conducive body language for an intimate conversation.

"That's all? Then be my guest. Chat away."

-

As if Aidan cares anything at all for Corrie's 'off-putting' body language. Her obvious rebuffs of him only keep this chase interesting. When she settles on the far end of the bench, Aidan merely chuckles and slides closer to her. One arm is draped over the back of the bench behind her, his body angled towards hers, and he reaches out to run the back of his knuckles tenderly along her cheek. He speaks in a sotto voice, underscored with a mixture of amusement and appreciation, "You know, all that fire and attitude really is quite attractive."

-

"Yet last time it irritated the bloody hell out of you." Corrie shifts forward as soon as he touches her, resting her elbows on her knees and her head on her hands. "Are you attempting reverse psychology, or being sincere. It's rather difficult to tell."

Had she her handbag with her, she'd set it between them as a spacer. As it is, she sits even closer to the edge, wedging herself right against the arm of it.

-

"Would it make a difference at all if I said that I'm being sincere?" Aidan leans back and away, and studies her for a moment. He's completely unmoving, aside from those blue eyes sliding over her form, cataloging, weighing, measuring. Finally, he tosses out, "You know, if you'd just accepted my initial proposition, we wouldn't even be having this conversation." Or if she hadn't thrown off the glamour. He'd be lying if he said that didn't still smart.

-

Corrie snorts, allowing her eyes to roll upward. "Not at all, actually." Are soulless creatures capable of sincerity? That may be a debate for another time. At the moment, she's just trying to keep herself from lashing out at him over something insignificant.

"Your initial proposition? Of what? Having pretended to have been intimate with you? So that I'd be more open to it next time you proposed it?"

-

"I wasn't talking about pretending." Aidan drags the sentence out in a long, drawl. As amusing as it would be to continue in this vein, the vampire is getting bored. Not a good thing.

"Well, as much fun as this is," Aidan shifts, making as though he is preparing to leave. Except that he's kneeling in front of her in the blinking of an eye, and the playful flirtatiousness is set aside. He's not pulling the punches now and he focuses on her, calling on his preternatural skill of glamor and persausion. "It's time for you to start playing nice. A little friendliness and politeness would go a very long way right now."

-

"Weren't you? Isn't that what you were expecting when you tried to tell me that's what happened?"

Corrie is sincerely curious about that. She doesn't remember an offer so much as a declaration. Granted she was very upset by that point, and not really paying that much attenti —

Finding him suddenly in front of her, she starts. Her body shifts back a little on the bench.

"You're right. I apologize for the stand-offish behavior." Part of her knows that it's not what she wanted to say, but she's just staring at him a little blankly. Her heart rate slows a little, and she seems to calm down a bit as well.

-

It's clearly visible the moment that his words take effect on her. The little wrinkling frown around her mouth fades, and Aidan can hear her heartbeat slow, can hear the change in her breathing rate. He nods and takes her hands in his and gives them a squeeze. "Good girl. Now, I need you to believe me when I say that I'm not going to kill you, because I'm not. But, that does mean that you are not to tell anyone, ever what I am. Let's just keep that between us, yeah?"

-

It's probably a very good thing that Corrie's already told those that matter about him. Otherwise, she would be in a very odd predicament. "I'm not a puppy, you don't need to tell me I'm a good girl and give me a cookie when I please you." It's still snark, but it's a great deal lessened. More as though she were teasing a friend.

"Sure. Between us."

-

Aidan thinks that he likes her like this. Still snarky, but not acting as though she's actively trying to figure out how to conjure a wooden stake out of thin air. A smile flitters across his features, but it's a brief thing because he's not quite done yet. "Very important," Aidan cups her face delicately between his palms, holding her gaze intently, "You are not going to try and harm me or even kill me. We have a nice, friendly little truce here, and you might even start to like me a little."

-

"Why would I try to kill you?" Maim, sure. Injure, definitely. Kill? Corrie's just not the killing type, really. "What makes you think I don't like you?" Her brow arches upward and she blinks at him a few times. There's a brief breaking of the glamour in that, but she snickers. "Because of what you are? That would hardly be friendly now would it."

Beat.

"What are you doing?"

-

Crystalline silver-blue eyes flicker over the witch's features as Aidan tries to determine how much of that actually took. He's not sure about the last part, but she isn't clamouring away from his touch, and her heart isn't racing like it's trying to erupt out of her chest, so it wasn't a total wash. He's reasonably certain that the most important bits took - playing nice, not revealing his true nature, and not killing him. It's too close and too delicate to try to rope her again, especially now that her mental guard is probably up even if she doesn't realize it.

Aidan lets his hands drop from her face to her shoulders and winks, blue eyes crinkling mischievously at the corners, all playful flirtation again, "Wondering exactly how hard you would hit me if I tried to kiss you." Beat. "I don't want to find out, so I'm not going to try it." Though now that he's said the words, it's not exactly a horrible idea, but … best not to push his luck with this one, yet.

He lifts himself up and slides back onto the bench beside her, as though the last few moments never happened, "Tell me, what exactly is the cute little witchling doing down here by herself, anyway?"

-

Corrie considers the question for a decent amount of time. Her eyes glance at his face, then away. She may be more relaxed, but that doesn't mean that she's not going to be prone to revealing everything.

"Likely as hard as I could, which would likely be much like a mosquito hitting an elephant." A mean slap she may have, but it's not as though she's highly skilled at any sort of martial form.

"I was looking for something. Why else would anyone be down here? It's not exactly Harrods, now is it?"

-

There are few locations in London where Mr. Gideon Reese travels without some sort of retinue. The undercity, in that particularly designated area just for those of the spell-casting persuasion, is one of those special spots. It's where he prefers not to share his comings and goings, what he's looking at, what he's interested in, and what he's not. The nicest thing about the undercity, as far as Gideon is concerned, is that touch of… anonymity with deference.

With a greatcoat hanging on his shoulders, a nod to the weather 'up top' and the chill in the air below, Gideon takes the tunneled corridors with a decided familiarity. He slows around corners, his hand reaching out to touch the walls, and a smile creases his face, even if it's only the edges that move. It's around another corner where the public face of Reese International slows even further as blue eyes scan the length of corridor before him… and his brows rise.

Now there's a familiar face…

-

Corrie's response is given consideration and it's met with a bit of inward disappointment. If only he'd had longer to work on her, but the vampire will have to settle for what he has. The little witch is calmer, more relaxed and nicer to him, all of which could possibly be of use someday even if that day is not today. "Maybe some other time then," Aidan flashes Corrie a charming smile, brushing his fingers across her shoulder. "Your loss," is added with another wink.

Rolling his head, Aidan looks around the Undercity. "But you have to admit. Harrod's doesn't have nearly as interesting sorts of things as you can find down here."

-

"Harrods is cleaner, and there is less of a chance of my arse getting wet when someone decides to stand directly in front of me," Corrie points out, only mildly cheekily.

As to whether that's her loss or not, that's debatable. She'll give in to the fact that despite what he is, Aidan is extremely eye-pleasing, but for Corrie it's honestly got to be more than that. Otherwise, she'd have fallen over her feet the first time she laid eyes on…

"Bollocks," she exclaims the second she spots Gideon down the corridor.

-

Whatever smile that may have played upon Gideon's face is gone in a moment. Blue eyes flicker from the man with her to her.. and back before he begins his path once again towards the pair and eventually (he hopes!) to shops and people beyond. At this distance, there is no telling what Aidan is, or even who he might be.. other than what it looks like. Of course, he's less than kind— after all, assignations in the Undercity happen all the time. The press of flesh, the buying and selling— all that has a presence, just like above ground.

Gideon's hands are tucked in the pockets of the long jacket, his gaze directed forward, even if he can't resist the temptation of trying to suss out exactly what is what…

Courtesy.. in the beginning, wins out, if only to start with putting the witch off.. A nod, and 'Good evening' is offered. It's all he can do to not stop.. and part of the temptation is fed. "Interesting news in the papers these days. Pictures are certainly worth a thousand words."

Gotta love the tabloids.

-

The vampire's reaction is instinctive, though muted. Lest it be forgotten, he is truly a predator, and like any predator, he's territorial and possessive of those things that he perceives to be his. Aidan has never been good at sharing, unless it's food, and Corrie has been elevated beyond that level. It doesn't mean that Aidan isn't interested in sampling the red head vintage, it just means that she currently has more use to him than a meal. It also means that given the witch's reaction when she saw the man, that those primal, basic instincts kicked in. Nothing over the top or even threatening is said or done, but he does angle his body more toward Corrie, draping his arm along the back of the bench behind her.

Aidan's gaze slides between Corrie and the man who's face is vaguely familiar. Aidan knows that he's never met him before, but there is a niggling familiarity that he just can't place at the moment. The vampire tilts a polite nod at the man, echoing the greeting, before his blue eyes slide curiously back to the witch. Clearly the two are acquainted, after all.

-

"Good evening," she offers in return, surprised by the cordiality of his greeting. Corrie blinks at him a moment and then suddenly blushes.

"Tabloids will print anything these days, honestly," trying to brush it off with a laugh. "Especially in regards to where the rich, powerful playboys are concerned. Isn't that right, Aidan?" As she considers him to fall into that category as well.

"Pardon my lack of manners. Gideon Reese, this is Aidan Boyle a…" Vampire, screams her mind. "An acquaintance I happened to run into after falling into a puddle a ways back." Generally, Corrie could care less about her manners where a sorcerer is concerned but something is keeping her rather calm at the moment. At ease even.

Though noting the change in Aidan's demeanor she blinks a few times, looking confused.

-

"Must say it was certainly not a side of you I expected."

Blushing?

Gideon looks momentarily.. puzzled, but covers easily, sliding back into the air of feigned cordiality. He catches that bit of possessiveness on the part of.. Aidan? First name..

A polite nod is given in Aidan's direction at the introduction, his hands remaining casually in their pockets of his jacket. "Mr Boyle." His brows rise in askance at the manner of re-acquainting? "A puddle?"

There is something decidedly off about the woman, and Gideon isn't sure what it is. If he cared, Gideon would press. As it is, however, what the little witch does in her spare time, as long as it doesn't affect Rhys, is her business.. and that includes.. acquaintances.

-

Gideon Reese! It clicks for Aidan even as Corrie makes the introductions. It also brings up the question of how the woman knows the man and … Interesting. There are all sorts of paths to follow for that particular inquiry, of what the man is, and Aidan tick marks it in his mind for later. Evidently there is far more to the little witchling than he thought.

"Mr. Reese," Aidan is nothing if not able to pull off cordial professionalism, though he notes that the man doesn't offer his hand. That's fine for Aidan; the Vampire isn't offering his hands either.

"I'd hardly describe myself as powerful," Aidan says with a laugh, though he denies neither the rich nor playboy parts of the description. "And I try to stay out of the tabloids. Though I wasn't aware that you've had such an honor? What have you been getting up to, Corrie?" The blush is unexpected and Aidan really wonders what the pair is going on about with the tabloids. Not that he'll come out and boldly ask more than he has. Not just yet.

"We had a … collision," Aidan offers with a nicely feigned embarrassed smile. "I apologized and helped her up, but I don't think she's forgiven me."

-

"It was just a spot of fun. Quite frankly, I enjoyed your brother's company, and it was nice to forget for an evening that there should have been animosity there." Corrie fidgets a little, averting her eyes once more. Were she not generally so quick to snap or snark at Gideon, she'd seem almost downright demure at the moment.

"Quite a ways down the corridor. My best bet is that something sprang a leak, and it's just my luck that I happened to fall right into it." Beat. "My pants are still wet, I'll have you know. I don't particularly enjoy wandering around the undercity with a soggy bottom."

There is a blink in Aidan's direction. "It's old news, really. Less than a paragraph mention. I went dancing, if you must know. Hardly tabloid worthy, but for the company I was keeping."

-

"And she is quite a dancer," Gideon's gaze moves back to Corrie on the bench with Aidan virtually hovering. He knows all the little signals of ownership. New relationship, then?

Still, if that's the explanation for Corrie not having that usual fire in her eyes, it's one that would make some sense. That first.. blush of interest. When all is right with the world.

"Ah.. a gentleman then.. good for you."

Gideon's attention moves back towards Aidan, and there's that little thing in the back of his head that says that things just don't feel right, but.. beyond his brother's interest in her and the music, why should he even remotely begin to care? "Well.. I won't take your time any longer. I have my own errands.. so if you will excuse me.. Mr. Boyle, Ms. Kavanaugh.."

-

There are layers and layers of conversation and context here that Aidan knows he isn't getting. If he were the insecure type, he'd probably be bothered by it, but as it is, it really doesn't concern him, so he simply puts it aside and doesn't care. The only thing that still piques his curiosity is how the witch knows Reese, and what she's doing with his brother.

Aidan's brows rise, and then furrow as the man begins to excuse himself. Blue eyes dart between Reese and Corrie. He didn't think for one moment that Corrie had given him a proper name back at Flare, but now he's gotten it without even having to dig. "Kavanaugh," Aidan drawls. "Not Owens, then?"

-

"Absolutely Mr. Reese," Corrie replies effecting the same inflection in her voice.

Until Aidan drawls that name.

The change in her is immediate. She's leaping from the bench in order to make a mad dash, only she doesn't get further than standing up before she turns extremely pale, looks ill, and sits herself back down. She's already told Rhys about the use of the name, but that doesn't mean he's told his brother.

For once, the witch is trying to meet the sorcerers eyes dead on. There is a great deal of fear in her own eyes for she's now stuck between a rock and a hard place, and the outcome is not likely to be good.

-

Gideon's head bobs with the farewells given, and turning to move on along for his business, he only gets a single step away before he stops in his tracks. His head pulls up, and his expression turns, as they say, cold as ice. Up until now, he's been patient. Civil. Courteous even.

'This is my business, brother. Kindly keep out of it so I can straighten it out.'

'I had a feeling, Rhys, that she wasn't worth the effort. Now? Not only isn't she worth it, her life isn't worth a ha-penny as far as I'm concerned.'

It's one thing to hear it from his brother, half-brother, but to have it verified thusly..

While technically it's not his family, but it is his brother's, there's something of a concern, however tangential it may be.

Turning around, Gideon narrows his eyes and his regard flickers between this Aidan Boyle and Corrie, back and forth, until it finally rests upon the witch for the final time. His words, however, are for Aidan. "It's Kavanaugh."

-

Corrie's reaction is utterly inexplicable, and it's on the tip of his tongue to tease her, but that's before Aidan senses the dangerous change in the atmospher. His attention immediately shifts to Reese and the vampire stills.

Aidan doesn't move a muscle, not a single twitch as Gideon regards Corrie. He does know that look, that dangerous, hard edge teetering between striking and not. He's worn that look. His stillness is eerie in its unnaturalness, even. He understands that Reese is well known and that the wrong move might put him in a situation that von Richter wouldn't look favorably on, particularly if he exposes Vampires. Aidan also doesn't know what Reese is, or what would bring him to the Undercity, but he smells human and the heart beating in his chest is human, so at the very least Aidan knows that he has speed on his side should the man strike.

Why in the world he cares, Aidan doesn't speculate upon much. Partly it is because he does feel a certain sense of ownership of the witch now that she's — at least partially — under his influence. Also, he's certain that protecting her could go a long way to having her completely in his back pocket.

Mostly though, it's back to the whole ownership and not liking to share.

"Well, thank you for clearing that up, Mr. Reese." Aidan's words are quite cordial as he finally allows himself to move. It's a subtle movement, certainly, but it's also universal. Just a hair closer to the witch, his body coiled just enough to put himself between Reese and the woman.

-

"Yes. Thank you for clearing that up," Corrie says with a bit of less-than-subtle-sarcasm. "I was going to take care of that myself this evening, but this is just so much better." Try to keep it from his brothers, he said. Bloody lot of good that did, all things considered.

Then with a snap at Aidan, because she can't rightfully snap at Gideon for being upset with her she says, "Aidan, if you move any closer you're going to wind up in my lap and I really don't know if I can handle that at the moment, all things considered."

-

"Next time you see my brother, I'll have him check your identification. Just so we're clear on who you really are." If it weren't for the fact that he promised his brother, swore, there'd be a great deal worse coming from the angered sorceror.

Blue eyes flash in annoyance and lingering anger as they come back around to Aidan; he's not mad, per se, at Aidan. No reason for him to be. "I'd be careful, mate. Who knows what other names she gives to her punters." Nothing like lowering himself to crass, lower class slurs. Point made or not, it allows him to end the conversation on his side and continue on his way. He's still got things to do, people to see..

Gideon turns once again, his hands deep in his pockets, and begins to continue his path towards that witchery and sorcery side…

-

Aidan bristles with annoyance and indignation at Corrie's outburst. It takes all his restraint to not simply get up and leave her to her own defenses because clearly that's what she wants. He's not sure if she's that stupid or if she is simply that misinformed that she has no idea how dangerous a man Reese might be. And I don't make it a habit to defend and protect humans.

He relaxes marginally as the man delivers his insult. The Vampire supposes that a true suitor might have at least gotten upset and tried to defend the lady's honor, but Aidan is not thinking of Corrie as much of a lady right now, and he's already been told to stand down once.

Aidan waits until Reese is some distance away and leans in, his words harsh and biting, "You could stand to be a little more gracious. I didn't trust him not to strike out at you because that look on his face? I've seen it before." Beat. "Sorry, I forgot. You're not a damsel in distress."

-

"Of all the…" Corrie leaps up again at that, not caring whether Aidan is going to back her up or not. For one, Gideon has just insulted someone whom she is currently considering a 'friend'. For another, he's flat out calling her a prostitute.

Thankfully, she's got a few tricks up her sleeves that may be unexpected. Outwardly there's just a sweep of her hand. A small gesture. Added to that is a near imperceptible whisper beneath her breath. Nothing that will cause the man to fall on his face, but he'll definitely feel a not-so-subtle knock-back spell pushing him toward a wall. Gideon will recognize it as a basic sorcerer spell, more than likely.

"Next time I see your brother, I'll gladly provide my identification without your calling me a bloody prostitute, or insulting someone you've just met." Not that she expects anything different from Gideon Reese.

A slew of Latin is vented at Gideon, and out comes a binding spell — quickly as can be in the hopes that he can't, or will be unable to retaliate with some sort of energy bolt.

With that done, she turns toward Aidan and grabs his arm, motioning to the way they came. She wants to leave. Now. Thus, there's no apology, not yet. No way she's going to show a sign of weakness when she's trying to keep a sorcerer bound.

-

Gideon is already on the move, and the whispers go unheard.. thus, the shove pushes the sorcerer, as intended. There are a couple of stumbled steps taken, hands pulled from his pockets for proper balance. The response is almost instantaneous, once he gains his footing, that is; he turns around, his expression a barely controlled anger. He's pulling his shots, however; there are so many different spells that vie for utterance. There isn't one that finds its way out but for one— and it's an immediate spell. From his pocket comes a small silver mirror, which the vampire will love!, and the single latin word "Declina". The intent, of course, is for any personal attack to rebound and return to the original caster…

It's one of those protective spell that is so deliciously offensive.

-

The moment Corrie begins to murmur, Aidan tenses. It only takes a split second for him to remember that she can't hurt him due to the glamour, but it doesn't stop that momentary reaction when he first turns to her before the pieces begin to click into place. Even he knows that it's a bad idea for a witch to throw spells in the Undercity, and it's no big question as to where — or whom — her target is. Aidan has to admit he does delay a bit just to see how much power the little witch has and to see what she has up her sleeve.

The Vampire can hear Reese's words, even if Corrie can't, and in his mind there is a loud audible click. Bloody hell. Witches and sorcerors. This is so not a battle he wants to be caught in the middle of, and he's tempted to just leave the little witchling to fend for herself.

He doesn't however, when she goes from tugging on his arm to just stopping. Knowing that he is likely going to live to regret this, Aidan uses his preternatural speed and strength to his advantage. Before she can object, he scoops up the witch and tosses her over his shoulder and they're speeding away from the area.

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