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 Look Ma, One Hand (Yaksha/Sofia)

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Yaksha
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Subject Post 1PostSubject: Look Ma, One Hand (Yaksha/Sofia)   Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:53 pm

The man sitting at the high-stakes poker table looked like the sort of man who could've talked a man into buying the items he'd just had stolen from him, or could convince a man to sell his child into slavery. He was surrounded by men and women alike, hard-looking people who stared at their cards with deadset expressions of intent, as if by staring at them hard enough they could change the ink upon them. This man, however, sat on the table, his cards upside down, touching each one in turn, and gently spinning it by the corners, with just his index and forefinger.

"Hello I walk into empty. Hallways tell me not to hurry."

"Gibberish won't help you, guy. I know what's in your hand. You've got shit, and there's not a single thing you can do to make me back away from the table."

Yaksha's head twisted immediately, one finger stabbing down on the center of each card, his smile widening ever so slightly. There was something eager and hungry that flashed far back in his eyes, something that said he'd had this conversation before, and that he had already won it a dozen times in his head. He leaned over, throwing a decapitated stump of what had no doubt once been an arm onto the man's shoulder, and leaning close.

"I knew what cards a guy had once, too. Because I know a lot of things I shouldn't. Comes with the territory, you know. Psychic, occultist, warlock, cursed, sufficiently advanced technology, call it whatever you like. People get all sorts of touchy when they think people are cheating. So why don't you tell the table, 'guy'? What am I holding in my hand?"

The man looked mildly perturbed by Yaksha's hand, but with a single hand he gently removed it, even patting it a bit; Yaksha was impressed by that. A lot of people seemed to act as if touching his severed stump, acknowledging the damage to it, would somehow soil their own hands, and leave them next in line to be mangled. But this man looked, more than anything, amused by the story. He reached down, tapping them one after the other.

"No magic needed. I know that between those five cards you can't possibly have anything higher than three-of-a-kind. You got your cards from the middle, and I saw them shuffling that deck. I know the density of the face cards, so it's not hard to figure out who got how many."

Yaksha's hand flew to his face, his expression one of shock and delight then, as he shook his head, speaking in french before he could even stop himself. He waggled one finger under the man's nose, his expression downright wolfish now.

"N'est-ce pas! Counting cards? For shame, my man! Even I'd never stoop that low! This is a game of luck and guts, not skill and prowess. The spoils go to the bold and the wild, not the one who turns it into a game of numbers. Betting isn't about mitigating losses; whoever taught you that was a damned fool."

Now there was a clearly sour expression on the competition's face. He reached up slowly, pulling off his hat, and then staring Yaksha intently in the eyes. There wasn't fear there, or concern, or even pity. The only look on this man's face was complete certainty of purpose, as he stuck a hand out.

"Nice words. But you lost this one. I'm not foldin', you're not beatin' my hand. There's security, there's video cameras...anything you do to win, they can go back and give it a look. All you can do is hope for the gods to smile on you, and give you what you need for a mulligan."

Again, that pensive, winning grin from the man who was no man, extending his own remaining hand and shaking. As he did, he reached his stump over the cards, gently tapping each one, one at a time; with each time, there was a faint sound of each and every person present squirming in their seats. Yaksha then turned back towards the table, and then gently tilted his chin.

"I'll let you do the honors. Then no one can claim I pulled a fast one. Any order you like, however many you like."

"Like hell. There's half a dozen other-"

"Fold."

"Fold."

"Fold."

"Fold."

"Fold."

"Fold."

Yaksha's hand was now gently folded behind his head, as he leaned back in his chair, looking up at the roof. His expression was serene, as he once more gently inclined his chin.

"Go on. Nothing to lose. Or are you gonna fold too?"

"You're grating my nerves, guy. I told you, the only way you can beat me is if you cheat."

"Then it's hardly a bet, is it? You may as well be predicting a coin flip after you've seen it fall."

One card. A three. Spades. There was a faint grunt from the gentleman, before he turned over another. A three; hearts. Yaksha's expression gently turned more amused, as he gestured for the man to flip another. A queen. Diamonds. The man let out a short bark, turning over the other two rapidly, one with each hand...his voice turning into a strangled croak.

A queen. Hearts. A three. Clubs. A full house.

"No. No. She was supposed to have at least two queens. The chances of you having three threes and two queens? It's-"

"I'm not one for probabilities. Don't spoil the fun. Give me my chips, and head off."

The man turned away from the table, murmuring under his breath; as he did, Yaksha reached over to the coins, sliding them all together, and folded them onto his palm. As he did, there was a faint sprinkling of what looked almost like snow from the two queens. One could almost see a dagger, on one of them; the trademark signature of a jack.

"Victory goes to the bold. Not the clever. But it was a valiant effort."
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Subject Post 2PostSubject: Re: Look Ma, One Hand (Yaksha/Sofia)   Sun Jan 15, 2017 1:01 pm


The Dark Quincy



Sofia Montero






"You could do me. That's always an option."

A purple-and-black corona formed just in front of Sofia, and from inside of it a remarkably pale, very tall man could be seen in silhouette, approaching the opening. He ducked down, and down, and down even further, to get through the opening...he must have stood at least ten feet tall, given his gait as he walked through an opening made for someone about the size of the quincy in front of him.

To call the man pale was an understatement, and injustice; he was a white blotch, something that almost seemed painful to the eyes to behold. There was an aggressive paleness there, something that seemed artificial in its intensity. Combined with his height, it made him look like a projection, some strange acid trip and not a real creature. It folded its arms over its chest, smirking at her with a smug, almost knowing delight, and then gestured towards a nearby building. It was, by Vegas standards, remarkably plain. Others had engaged in a never-ending arms race to become bigger and flashier, to make themselves look like an appealing place to go and scratch an itch. By comparison, this place looked...plain. Like a business center, where people would sit in cubicles, and go about typing at computers until the day was complete.

"Join me for the night. I guarantee you won't walk away disappointed. And while we sit, and drink, and talk, we can discuss a business proposition. And then, just maybe, we can discuss a more pleasant proposition."

There was a simple, rich delight in every word spoken by this...thing, as if the very act of speaking was something it cherished deeply, and considered sacred. Its eyes twinkled with mirth, its tongue faintly escaped from its mouth for a few moments, before returning, and then it turned without waiting for an answer, walking towards the cube slowly.

"Sofia Montero. As I live and breathe. I was beginning to despair you'd ever find your way back to us. Please. Let us twist your arm."

Coding Altered From: [The Frost]
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Subject Post 6PostSubject: Re: Look Ma, One Hand (Yaksha/Sofia)   Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:05 pm


The Dark Quincy



Sofia Montero






"In a manner of speaking, everyone knows everyone. You've met countless people like me. That should be a perfectly serviceable explanation for the deja vu you're experiencing, no? No, I guess that would be a bit too much of a stretch. Oh, well. This is what we in the business call a 'hook'! Now are you going to take the bait, or go swimming off? Time will tell."

He began to walk towards the black box with remarkable speed and grace despite his gangly appearance, something that should've had him weaving around like a man on stilts by all logic. Yet he moved four, five feet of leg with the same ease one would've maneuvered a chopstick, each footfall sending him across as much space as five or six motions from any other person. His hands rested in his pockets, giving him an air of ease as he approached the building, shrinking down with each new step as he got within 100 feet, then 50, finally standing only a foot over Sofia by the time he was standing in front of the doorway. He nodded to her ever so faintly, and twirled a hand towards the doors, which began to open entirely on their own.

The interior, in stark contrast to the building itself, was almost incredible in its opulence, and its size. It looked large enough to seat an army of ten thousand comfortably, and from inside the sounds of ringing bells and rolling dice was so loud as to be deafening. It looked almost like one had been transported into another world entirely, the air positively shimmering with a richness that couldn't be found elsewhere; it almost made one feel like a greedy rat that had chewed their way into a pantry of unfathomable size. And her host stood there, spontaneously garbed in a shade of rich purple so dark and rich that it likely cost more than most made in a year.

"Can you tell I'm a fan of the good Doctor? It was a devil to make work, but...I had time. And resources. Welcome to the Original Sin, darling. You're going to love it here."



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Subject Post 8PostSubject: Re: Look Ma, One Hand (Yaksha/Sofia)   Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:16 pm


The Dark Quincy



Sofia Montero







"No, Sofia. This is the part where you work it out from social cues, and intuition. If I gave you the information freely, then it wouldn't be worth the cost. You know as well as I do that I could lie. So fucking figure it out."

He reached over the bar, snatching a handful of olives, and popping them into his mouth one at a time, chewing on them ruminatively, as he looked around the room itself, looming over her as he leaned in obvious relaxation against the bar's edge. Most people would've been squirming or sweating with such a sharp piece of wood pressing against their back, but he hardly even seemed to notice it, as he reached into his hand time and time again, plucking up the items. Near the end, there was an undeniable trick of the light, some sleight of hand or...something...but it looked very much like he was throwing a human eye into his maw, this time.

"Where did you go, Sofia? Did you wander the wilderness, trying to remind yourself of your roots? Did you struggle with some inner darkness, and come out of it reaffirmed? I've kept myself busy, so it wasn't easy to forget that night we had together, and the night we had before that...but in the end, forgetfulness is something you simply pay for in installments. You never truly have it. Great to visit, but no vacancies."

He turned towards her, lips curling up in an ever so faint smirk, and then running a hand through his hair; the scent of brine was very strong in the air, and now it seemed to be coating the strands of very fine white hair, leaving him reeking of vinegar. He didn't seem to mind, simply chuckling under his breath a tiny bit, and then pointing at the stage.

"Would you like to take over as entertainment for the night? I could make arrangements. You wouldn't even need to change your outfit. If I particularly like what you're playing, I may even supply some vocals. Perhaps then you'll be able to remember. Although...I can't recall any singing happening, in the time we spent together. Oh, well. Perhaps -my- mind is playing tricks, now."

He bared his teeth, his eyes glittering with delight and triumph, as he met her gaze, bowing gracefully, his hands canting towards the stage even as his hips twisted.

"You need but say the word. Let's make this night a triumphant return for you."



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Subject Post 10PostSubject: Re: Look Ma, One Hand (Yaksha/Sofia)   Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:46 am


The Quincy Prodigy



Sofia Montero