Private You're Out of Your Depth

Keen

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Set before the Mysterious Ocean Event Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Around Konpeitō was a small room rented out for privacy. Probably for people who wanted to get drunk and fuck, considering the space. He had no interest in doing a business deal in some rickety, disgusting little bar in the corner or some loud club. He was better than that. His alter ego was better than that. And he had money to spare for comfort. Until his possible employer arrived and messaged "Takumi" that they were here, he forced himself to relax. One hand holding a glass of unicorn blood with a straw to slip under his wooden mask while the other arm was spread across the top of the couch.

This was stupid. There were a million and one reasons for him to not do this. He didn't get in trouble for the crimes of his dad, the pardon wouldn't work for him if he got caught now, if he did get caught his reputation was ruined, and he was overworked. All he wanted was to figure out the right... the right thing for him. So why not go back to what he knew best? To what he was trained for. More or less. Even if his dad didn't realize it.

On the upside, wearing the skin of a pink fish-man would give him the chance to try again if he messed up. It was a relatively simple form. Brown hair, young adult features under the mask, a slim, scaled tail coming from his pants. Most of his skin was hidden under his jacket (with "HI" on the front in white Comic Sans), gloves, skinny jeans, and combat boots. All black. It was uncomfortable at first with the weather, but he had since adapted to it.

 
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Kada

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Takumi was obviously a pseudonym, but that was par for the course in a business like this. Caissa was using her own pseudonym - not because she was particularly concerned with keeping herself secret but because she liked keeping up with who knew her as what. It helped keep her memories sorted so she could more readily access them. So she'd chosen Pollux as a bit of a joke that she was sure that her contact wouldn't get at all.

She did take some precautions however. A black bob wig and sclera contact lenses to at least hide the most basic of her appearance. She couldn't do much about her scent, but that wasn't a great worry for her.

She texted Takumi as she stepped through the front door of the bar, looking around and taking stock of everyone present. There wasn't anyone that immediately set her on edge - no one that she knew from school or knew would probably have hearing acute enough to be a problem.
 

Keen

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His burner phone buzzed. He sat his drink down, texted Pollux back with a simple description of himself, then exited the room to meet her at the front.

The nice thing about Manta Carlos was that wearing a mask was not too weird of a thing. Some people stared or gave a compliment about it, most didn't comment in case there was some Tragic Angsty Backstory behind it. Probably something like his face being horribly scarred or burnt and he was hiding the horror.

So when he reached the front of the room, his stance was relaxed. His hands were in his pockets, his back bent to make him look an inch shorter, and his head tilted slightly down as if he wasn't paying much attention to anything. In actuality, he was eyeing everyone in search for his employer. Something a little hard when your peripheral vision was blocked.
 

Kada

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The mask was weird. But whatever, he was probably deformed or something. Or wanted people to think he was deformed. Whatever. She closed the distance between the two of them and gave a wave just inside what she imagined was his field of view. "Takumi? Nice to meet you. I'm Pollux."

Her voice slipped into an easy going, implacable eastern European accent. Polish, maybe? Who could tell, honestly. She gestured towards a booth, far to the side where there were fewer people. "Wanna sit? It's nice to meet you face to face." She smirked ever so slightly at the face to face comment, looking blatantly at his mask and making it clear that she was doing so.
 

Keen

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Thank fuck for the mask. He didn't need a strong sense of smell to tell who this was. Up close, he could see all her features. The sharpness of her eyes, the shape of her nose, her pale skin... And of course, she had a great accent. The disguise was good for someone who wasn't familiar with her, but he roommatted with her.

He probably made a mistake.

He stared at the woman going by Pollux for a second before regaining his composure and relaxing his tense body. "Yooo," he replied, playing up his Japanese accent that had softened over the years. This time, he used a northern accent. After laughing at her joke, he tilted his head towards a hallway. "Actually, I got us a private room. Figured you'd appreciate the privacy and all that."

Now that he was actually looking at Pollux, he would have preferred to stay near a crowd. He couldn't place why, however. Maybe he didn't want her attention fully on him.
 

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"A private room sounds perfect, actually. I hate crowds."

Caissa followed behind Takumi, her lips drawing into a thin line as they moved to their more secluded area. She had a gun on her - and why wouldn't she? But she hoped that the brief tension she'd seen in her contact wouldn't mean she'd need to use it.

Once they were settled in, she sat down and crossed her legs Basic Instinct-style. A smirk Kon would be all too familiar with crept across her face, her right pupil contracting ever so slightly as it recorded the entirety of the situation. "So how do you work? Do we do small talk? A little foreplay before we get to the good stuff? Or do you want to just get right to business?"
 

Keen

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Yeah. This was her.

Once again, he had to thank the mask for hiding a grimace when Caissa mentioned foreplay. Somehow, that wasn't the most nerve-wrecking part. He didn't want any small talk. The less he had to lie, the better. "Let's get to business. I don't like playing around.

"My main work revolves around getting information on people. Breaking into social media, collecting passwords, moving shit from one account to another, all that jazz. That means I need a place to start. Can't figure out what I can do and how much it'll cost until I know. So, whatcha have for me?"
 

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"Perfect. I'm not really in the mood for fucking around either."

Granted, that wasn't entirely the truth. But 'Pollux' could survive with strictly business today. She leaned forward and tapped her fingers together, listening patiently as Takumi explained his business to her. Standard fare, but valuable nonetheless if he was good at what he did.

"The people I need info on are less individuals and more of a group. The Black Wings. A gang that used to run around here. They had tech and processes that I haven't been able to analyze. Most of it was destroyed or put in police custody. I want them."

"The kicker is though, I don't know who is or was a Back Wing. So you'll be starting blind. I know that's a pain in the ass, so of course I'm willing to pay extra for your trouble."
 

Keen

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"Takumi" tried to think back on what his dad would do. He had been in this business for years. Starting blind wouldn't be a big deal for him. It was a stumble to the finish line, or something like that. But that didn't hold true for Konpeitō. He only got to occasionally help with his dad's work.

What a fucking idiot. Look at how well that worked out for the both of them.

Noticing his anger bubbling up, along with the intensity of his colors, he forced his mind onto the matter at hand. The saturation was barely noticeable as he turned it back down. With a smooth gesture, he lifted a hand up and rotated it around lazily to distract from any tenseness in his body from earlier. Konpeitō, Takumi, and whoever else he was presenting as often didn't get much attention from his changes unless they were particularly big. He figured Pollux would assume the lighting was playing a trick on her. He hoped, anyway. Caissa was unnervingly perspective.

"It is a pain in the ass, but I'll deal." The talk of being paid extra made it harder for him to keep his form under control. "I've heard about the Black Wings. I did some research on them a while back to make sure they wouldn't cause problems for me. I'll have to look over what I found to see if any of it is useful. So, there's that."

He gazed up at the ceiling, already making a plan. "Hope you don't expect me to actually get that tech if it's in police custody. My work is within the virtual world.""My focus will be on finding the gang members and their associates. From there, I can gather information surrounding them, find where they live, what they currently do, and if they have anything useful with them."
 

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Some kind of magic bubbled underneath Takumi's mask, and Caissa pursed her lips as she analyzed it. She couldn't tell what species he was, but he had a distinct kind of shape shifting going on. One that she felt like she'd seen before.

"I don't need you to get the tech for me, no. I can puzzle that out on my own once I have a few of the Black Wings themselves under my thumb. But finding them has proved difficult. Apparently some of them had magic bindings on them that kept them from talking about their operations with outsiders. A bitch and a half to deal with but..."

And it clicked. Of course she knew these magic patterns. She'd lived with them for a time. Caissa brought up memories to compare the current arcane pathways to. And there it was. Before she could stop it, a knowing grin crept across her face.

"Ah, sorry. Lost my train of thought there for a second. Where was I? Right, a bitch and a half to deal with, but if I can get in contact with one of them I'm sure I can get around the magic itself."
 

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