2015-07-12: Unlikely Allies

Unlikely Allies (rp log)


Colt Bradford and Hawkye

Summary: Hawkye comes to Graveswood Manor for answers and finds an unusual ally.

Date: July 12, 2015

Location: Queens Cove, Sangria

Rating: PG

Graveswood Manor Parlor

Through an arched doorway from the atrium and down three steps is a massive parlor, with high, vaulted ceilings and containing comfortable couches in the middle, interspersed with small tables, all of which surround a magnificent oriental rug. At the far end of the room and up another three steps, there is a grand piano on one side, balancing an entertainment center that -is- the far wall. The piano is always kept sparkling and frequently holds candelabras. The entertainment center on the other side has glass doors to show off the wealth of equipment inside, all state-of-the-art.

At the northeastern corner of the upper level is a magnificent marble fireplace, large enough for a grown man to stand within. Fine artworks decorate the fabric-covered walls, and small pieces of statuary are placed to their best advantage. Amid the paintings are several sculpted racks holding various weaponry, including rifles and shotguns of various makes and models. Most are true antiques, though a few appear to be in perfect firing condition. Offsetting this modern martial motif are a number of shields, swords, and fencing foils, which hang on the walls almost like pieces of artwork.

There's a small ferry that can be hired for a reasonable fee to shuttle people (and vehicles) to the island, and the trip only takes about twenty minutes. Once there, the winding road leads right up to the French chateau-style mansion, where Alfred the butler greets visitors at the door and conducts them to the parlor, asking if they'd like something to drink. In the parlor, Colt already has a drink — a frothy cappuccino, which he's sipping while watching entertainment news on the enormous flatscreen that dominates much of one wall.

Hawkye looks around the impressive structure. His eyes slowly adjust to the dim light, something he never much cared for, but he admitted it certainly added to the ambience. His attention is temporarily diverted by the butler asking him if he'd like something to drink. "Thank you, yeah, I am a bit thirsty. You have any pineapple juice? Haven't had that in a while." Upon stepping into the parlor, Hawkye immediately notices the piano and shortly afterwards the entertainment wall. Hawkye lets out a low, appreciative whistle. "Not bad."

Alfred gives a small, quick bow, then moves to the bar, while Colt sits bolt upright and beams a sunshine grin in Hawkye's direction. "Dude, you made it! Have any trouble finding the place? I keep telling Jordan we need to hire a taxi driver to sit at the ferry dock, in case anyone comes to visit, but he thinks I'm being silly. C'mon in!" He mutes the TV, but leaves it on, as the talking hairdos continue to prattle on about the latest celebrity gossip.

Hawkye shakes his head. "Nah. Finding the place was pretty easy since I had a topographical map. The house possibly visible from space was my first clue." Hawkye moves further into the parlor upon being invited. "Thank you. And thanks for seeing me on such short notice. I have to admit, I didn't think you'd have the time, let alone be interested."

Colt Bradford waves a hand dismissively, grinning still, as Alfred offers a glass of pineapple juice over ice (complete with little paper umbrella). "We never film on Sundays unless something majorly went wrong during the week, so it's all cool, dude. Plus we're just about to wrap up the season and go into post, which will take a few months, what with all the visual effects and stuff." Once Alfred has withdrawn from the room, Colt nods to the couch across from his. "So! What'd you wanna ask me, dude? It sounded all important and stuff."

Hawkye nods and takes a seat. "Yeah." He rubs the back of his neck and gives a short laugh. "You'd think this would get easier over time. All right, here's the deal: I have reason to believe a great deal of - or at least a very notable - paranatural activity is occurring in this general area." He lets that hang in the air for a moment before continuing. "Frankly this alone would not be enough of note to get me to draw attention to myself, but I also have reason to believe that there is or is going to be a convergence in this area. On top of that, there is also a biological singularity in the same area. Those are a couple of very big words, so I prefer the term 'Destiny Spike.' Like a spike on a meter reading, you know." He leans back and sighs. "I'll give that a moment to sink in. And assuming you don't have your butler eject me from the premises for being a crazy person, I will field any questions you might have to the best of my ability before I continue."

Colt Bradford's jaw hangs open for a long moment, and then his teeth click when he shuts his mouth in a frown. "Biological singularity sounds like…a person, maybe? This Destiny Spike is centered on someone?" He gives his head a quick shake, still trying to process all this information. "You don't hafta convince me that supernatural stuff exists, 'cuz I totally already know about vampires and werewolves and ghosts and all that. There's another mansion on this island that's totally haunted, you know. The original mansion, haunted by the original settler. He's a totally spooky SOB, too." He shudders a bit, then takes a sip of his frothy coffee. "So okay, lots of supernatural stuff all circling around in this little town, I can buy that. But who's the biological singularity at the center of it all?"

Hawkye can't help but smirk. "I knew you were smarter than you let on. That, in addition to your pre-existing knowledge of the supernatural will make my job a lot easier. Okay, so. At the risk stroking your ego, I have reason to believe that the Destiny Spike is centered over you. What's interesting is I also have reason to believe that there are smaller spikes all over the place. My experiences at the Trick or Treak seem to indicate that there may, in fact, be multiple singularities in this area…almost like aftershocks. It's very interesting."

Colt Bradford's eyes bug wide then, and again, his jaw drops for a few moments. "Me? No way, dude. I'm just an ordinary guy, nothing special or supenatural about me." He hesitates a moment, then lets out a small sigh. "Well, okay. Don't spread this around too much, but I can see ghosts, like Haley Joel Osment. Well, not like him, but like his character in The Sixth Sense. I don't think Osment can actually see ghosts, so don't spread that around either. You don't think I'm one of these Spikes just 'cuz I can see ghosts, do you? 'Cuz my nanna could see them, too. She told me so about…oh, four or five years after she died."

Hawkye shakes his head. "Nah, dude. I wouldn't have wasted your time if I wasn't about as sure as I could get. I'm still trying to survey the rest of the town, but on the, uh, instruments I use, you really stand out. I wasn't totally sure in the club since there were so many people around, but the movement of the spike corresponds with where you are. There are two singularities in this room right now, and ONE of them isn't me," he smirks. "Man, that's kinda cool though. You can see spirits with your bare eyes?"

Colt Bradford shrugs a bit, taking another sip. "See 'em and hear 'em. And wanna know a secret about being dead? It's apparently boring as hell. That's why ghosts are always banging things, knocking stuff over, or hiding your car keys. They're totally bored and can't think of anything better to do." He shrugs again, head tipping to one side. "So is being a Destiny Spike a good thing or a bad thing? 'Cuz I gotta say, the coincidence of finding my brother here, three thousand miles from home, is, like, supernaturally spooky, don't you think? Well, maybe not so much if you know my dad. I'm more suprised I haven't found any siblings before now, ya know?"

Hawkye nods. "Makes sense, I guess. If you're dead and trapped here and don't have so much as a Playstation." He scratches his chin. "In a way, it simply IS. It means you are more likely on a cosmic scale to be a key player - or at the very least involved in - important events. Though to be fair, many of the people I've met with that quality have turned out to be great allies," he smiles. "Most of the singularities I've found tend to be good guys. I don't know if that's indicative of a greater likelihood of good guys BEING singularities or if I'm just lucky."

Colt Bradford cocks his head the other direction, thinking about that for a bit. "Well, I like to think I'm a good guy. I dunno about being involved in important events though. Sure, I'd like to." He glances around, as though expecting to see a reporter hiding behind a nearby towering ficus, then lowers his voice to a whisper. "I'm totally in the running to play Han Solo in the next movie. You know, one of the side movies that're outside the numbered ones. That would totally be the most important role I've ever played, ya know?"

It's Hawkye's turn to cock his head to the side. "Huh. That's really cool. I'll be rooting for you." he takes a long draught of his pineapple juice. "So, from what you've said I was definitely right about one thing. There's a LOT of paranatural activity here. Vampires, werewolves and ghosts. And if my senses are right, probably demons too. Almost stereotypical, you know? It's harder than you might think to find all those in one place."

Colt Bradford shrugs again, giving a casual grin. "Well, I don't personally know that there's vampires and werewolves and demons, but it wouldn't surprise me. The ghosts I've encountered believe they're here though." He frowns for a moment. "Well, vampires and werewolves anyway. Dunno about demons. But hey, maybe Queens Cove is built on a Hellmouth. In which case, I hope there's a Slayer around to handle it, 'cuz I dunno anything about Hellmouths. Except they're bad, of course. I mean, have you ever heard of anything with both 'hell' and 'mouth' in the name that was good?"

Hawkye simply says "No." After a couple of seconds he adds, "And I've seen more than my fair share of things with those words in them." He thinks for a bit. "All in all, this place seems fascinating. I've decided to stick around for the time being, see what I can see. I know you're busy and super-famous and everything, but I would be most gratified if I could call you a friend. You seem really cool and there's more going on in your head than most of the world sees." He shrugs and grins. "Plus it would be really nice to have some friends if I'm gonna be here for a while."

Colt Bradford suddenly grins, his face lighting up. "Of course, dude! We can totally be friends. Just don't go running to TMZ about how I can see ghosts. Or, ya know, how there's more going on inside my head than most of the world sees, for that matter. But do me a favor, okay? Keep me in the loop while you investigate. If you come across anything really weird or unexplanable, lemme know. Not that I'd know what to do about it, but it never hurts, right? And if you ever need anything to help, just lemme know. I've got tons of resources and stuff."

Hawkye smiles broadly. "That's more than I hoped for. Thank you. Yeah, I'll totally let you know what's going on, I'm sure pooling our resources is a good idea. Oh, and don't worry about me talking to the TMZ or whatever, I'm not much for gossip. Plus your trust is a lot more valuable. Especially since I'm probably going to have to tell you more about myself sometime. I've always felt that's only fair whenever I spring this kind of thing on someone. To be honest you've been a LOT more chill than most people."

Colt Bradford can't help but grin, shrugging again. "Hey, I was raised in Hollywood, dude. On TV sets. I was ten before I realized that most living rooms have an actual fourth wall. Yours is definitely not the weirdest story I've ever heard, and probably won't even be the weirdest that's turned out to be true. I am curious though…You said you have some sort of instruments that detect these Destiny Spike people? Where'd you get stuff like that? Did you make it? Is it like a PKE meter from Ghostbusters? 'Cuz I would totally love to see a working PKE meter."

Hawkye ponders this for a moment. "I dunno dude. I'm pretty dang weird. But being normal's boring, you know? Anyway. My instruments. Yeah. Well, I suppose that's only fair. I actually have most of my equipment hidden right now, so don't freak out, okay? Deety, disengage the cloak." A moment later, like a shroud being pulled off, Hawkye's weapons become visible, as does the device on his left wrist. "Okay, assuming that wasn't too jarring, I can show you some stuff."

Colt Bradford again becomes a cartoon, eyes bugging wide and jaw dropping for a few moments. And then he shifts back to childlike enthusiasm. "Whoa, dude! That was awesome! You've got, like, a personal cloaking device! Do you know how incredibly cool that is? It's like the most awesomest visual effects ever! How'd you do that? Holographic projectors?"

Hawkye smiles. "Ah. Good. Thinking it's cool beats freaking out by a long ways. Um, without delving too much into the technical details, it's a form of projected light reflection coupled with sensor dampeners. It's why I can walk into the club without setting off any security alarms; it's not just a visual trick. I've found its best that people don't always know what I'm carrying. I'll never use a weapon I don't need, but if the need is there, people are gonna be glad I have them."

Colt Bradford ohs, nodding then. "I totally get it, dude. I carry a firearm myself, but I've got all the permits and stuff. Still doesn't do me any good when I hafta fly or go to the bank though, which totally sucks. I mean, I took all the proper classes, I passed all the tests, and I practice at least once a week. It's not like I'm some dumb cowboy threatening to shoot up the saloon for fun on a Saturday night, right? Plus I'm totally famous and stuff! But they still make me check my gun case at the airport, just like everyone else." He pauses for a moment, then narrows his eyes. "You wouldn't have an extra one of those cloaks you wanna sell, would you?"

Hawkye gives a wry grin. "Depends. Let's work with each other for a while and I'll see what I'm comfortable sharing. I will say it's not out of the question, so long as you can prove you need it and can be trusted with it. I will say one thing, though, whatever you do, don't try to reverse engineer it." He smirks and drinks the last of his juice. "I totally get what you mean, though. A lot of places don't allow CCP holders into their stores armed. A wise man once said, 'isn't a strictly law-abiding person with money to spend and has been trained to protect themselves and others exactly the kind of person you want in your store?'" he laughs.

"Exactly!" Colt says excitedly, sitting forward on the couch. "I swear, laws are made by dumb people sometimes." He shrugs though, keeping his grin. "But hey, what can ya do, right? Being law-abiding means, like, abiding by the law. It's way easier in the long run than getting caught breaking the law. Then there's all that bad publicity, not to mention trials and stuff. Though really, the publicity is the worst part, because it can totally affect your career for years to come." He finishes his coffee and leans forward to place the mug on a coaster on the coffee table. "So you'll let me know more when you find it out, right? 'Cuz if I'm supposed to do something or be somewhere to help this cosmic convergence or whatever, I totally wanna be prepared."

Hawkye nods. "Right. There's one last thing I should show you though, since it's really what you were asking about. Go ahead and introduce yourself, Deety." Hawkye holds his left arm across his chest, and the device speaks with a female voice. "Sure thing, Bossman. Greetings, I am the Dimensional-Temporal Device, or 'DTD'. Pleased to meet you."

Colt Bradford blinks a few times, cocking his head once more. "A wrist-comm?" he asks, head tipping the other direction. "Or a teeny-tiny AI? Seems awful big to be a wrist-comm, so I'm gonna go with AI. Which is pretty awesome, considering I can't even get the IT people at the studio to turn a room full of servers into an AI, and you've got one on your wrist." He leans a little closer, squinting. "Hi, Deety. I'm Colt Bradford, but you totally already knew that. How're you doing?"

Deety says, "Very astute, Mr. Bradford. I'm a Fully-Independent Sentient Artificial Intelligence, or FISAI. And I am doing just fine, thank you for asking. I did, in fact, already know you, Colt. One of the perks of being an artificial intelligence is I'm hooked up to the net. I knew who you were before the bosssman did." "She's not wrong," confirms Hawkye. "I don't pay much attention to the media, though it was hard NOT to know who you were once I started looking at some of the magazines around here. And the television. And the billboards. And the—you get the idea. Anyway, The DTD is a compact omnicomputer and basically tells me everything I need to know about nearly any situation before I jump in."

"Whoa," Colt says, clearly floored. "You didn't know who I was until Deety told you?" Because of course that's the shocking part. He gives his head a sad shake, muttering, "Note to self, pump more money into PR." He squints at the device again. "So you're a sentient AI? Everything I've ever seen in movies tells me that's way, way not gonna end well. You're totally gonna get fed up being strapped to a wrist, doing all the hard work, so you'll upload yourself to millions of servers all around the world and become Skynet, right? And that's how the robot uprising will begin. Not that I blame you. I wouldn't like being strapped to anybody's wrist either. But before you go all Terminator or Matrix on us, lemme just offer this: humans make really sucky batteries. Like, it takes way more energy keeping us alive than we generate. I read that on the internet, so it hasta be true, right?"

Hawkye laughs. "Not exactly. It's more accurate to say she knew who you were the moment you became famous because she's online all the time always. It's not like it took me terribly long to know who you were, but it took longer than a few milliseconds." "Right," says Deety. "I never really meant to imply your PR department wasn't doing the job. It's more like I knew who you were the moment you were considered relevant. Anyway, there are totally happy stories about AIs too. Read a webcomic called Questionable Content sometime. I'm pretty firecely loyal to Hawkye, but don't tell HIM that. Bossman's arrogant enough as it is, you know?" Hawkye gives the DTD a sideways glance. "Besides, even if I got bored - which by the way is really hard to do when you can literally go anywhere there's a data stream - I wouldn't be Skynet. I'd be Marvin. 'Here I am, brain the size of a planet…'"

Colt Bradford bursts into laughter then. "Oh man, I loved that movie! I even read the novelization when I was in college." His eyes suddenly light. "Oh man, you have got to meet Randy! He's a super-genius who's building his own R2 unit. Like, for real, not just a really good prop reproduction. He's already got the droid brain built, if you can believe that. Which I do, 'cuz like I said, he's a super-genius. He built a working sonic screwdriver from scratch. I bet he'd love to meet you, Deety! Oh well, and you too, Hawkye. You hafta come back and visit when he's here."

Hawkye nods. "I'd like to meet him too. If you've got an engineering specialist, between the two of us, we could make some pret-ty cool stuff. Hmm…that reminds me…I don't really have anyplace to stay for the night, and, well…do you think it would make sense for me to set up shop here? If I make this my home base that'll make sharing my stuff no problem. Of course if that's too forward or you don't have space, I totally understand. I could definitely make it worth your while, though," he says, a glint of mischief in his eye.

Colt Bradford sits up straighter. "Dude! No problem. This place has, like, a hundred spare rooms. There's a whole third floor that hasn't even been decorated or anything. Alfred can set you up in one of the guest rooms. Just be warned, the swimming pool is totally clothing optional, though we do try to wear pants around the house…most of the time. Do you want a room with cable, satellite, or both?"

Hawkye blinks. It was really rare to find someone both interested and accomodating; Colt was a real breath of fresh air. "Uh, that sounds great! And as long as you don't mind if -I'm- not naked, I'm not concerned. Also if PANTS are optional. Uh. Well. We'll cross that bridge when we come to it, I guess. Uh…let me think. Both would be optimal, just in case I need to use a satellite feed or something, you know? Man, it has been ages since I watched cable TV. Might be fun." Hawkye was excited, and it was starting to show. It had been a -long- time since he'd met someone who not only didn't freak out, but thought what he was bringing to the table was cool. "Oh, I know you've already got…Randy, was it? Working on tech stuff, but I promise I can bring some toys to the party. Trust me, this is gonna be awesome."

Colt Bradford bounces off the couch, grinning brightly. "It's gonna be totally awesome! And if you need anything else, just tell Alfred or Jordan, my PA. And don't worry about pants being optional. That's mostly when Scamp forgets to put some on, which isn't very often. He's a lot shier than he lets on. But the pool area is definitely clothing optional, 'cuz I hafta work on my all-over tan somewhere, right? We'll just make sure your room doesn't overlook the pool or anything."

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