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We'll always have pancakes


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Joseph Prince

False documentation is easy as f*ck to get your hands on when you know the right people. And for a few years of his late teens, Joe WAS the right people, so he knew exactly where to look.

At seventeen years old, Joseph Prince was selling forged documentation to illegal immigrants in North London, swapping counterfeit birth certificates and passports for deliciously scrumptious wads of cash. And by the time he was nineteen, he had so much money stuffed in his mattress that there wasn’t any room for bedsprings and stuffing.

Of course, the forgery was just the start of it and by the time of his arrest at twenty-one, Joe had robbery, assault and assisted murder under his belt. And with it, thirteen years behind bars before his release a week prior to the events we're about to touch on.

Losing your twenties to jail is sh*tty to say the least. The twenties really are the best years of your life, no matter what any half-drunk fourty-year-old recently divorced aunt tells you at a family BBQ, and when they're spent behind bars, all you’re left with is an angry soul brought up by the very worst role models. Had the right people got to him early enough, he could have been collared and reformed. But instead, naive and eager to please, he was subjected to years in the company of hardened criminals with decades worth of stories and bad habits to teach him. So by the time he was released, Joseph wasn’t better, he was merely fine-tuned. He knew the right words to say and the right promises to make to get him out. And all the bad he’d done in his teenage years would be nothing compared to the bad he could do now with an advanced skill set in how to get away with the very worst of crimes.

But for now, London was no place for him. Though aged, he was still recognisable. His young scrawny form was now muscular, toned and prison tattooed. His dark eyes a little deeper, his demeanour a little more curious and worrisome. He was big, mean and intimidating when he needed to be, but if he stayed in London, he’d either break parole in days or be so good at being good he’d find himself bloodied and beaten in a back alley by the next generation of little sh*ts wanting to prove themselves as hard.

So, for now, he’d head somewhere new to stretch his wings and see what mischief he could manage.

A week after the release of Joseph Prince, a Mr. Patrick Ansell boarded Virgin Atlantic flight VS 141 non-stop to Los Angeles from London Heathrow. Handing over a freshly printed passport accompanied by a wickedly handsome smile, Patrick, who held a striking resemblance to the afformentioned Joseph Prince, boarded the plane.

‘Welcome aboard, Mr Ansell’ a steward as he settled into a rather spacious first class pod, handing him a glass of something fizzy. Hell, if you’re going to break parole, take on a fake name and cross the Atlantic, you may as well do it in style. And away they went.

When Joesph landed into LAX, half asleep with headphones part strangling him and an eye mask askew, he could taste freedom and possibility in the air. And after checking into a rather fancy downtown LA hotel, he decided to cheat jet lag by exploring the city after hours, taking in the sights of drug addicts and the homeless - because there’s nothing quite like sweet memories of home.

...and then he was mugged. And beaten. And somewhere in the mix, bitten. And now it’s five weeks later, two full moons later to be precise, and Joseph is f*cking done with Los Angeles.

But we’ll get to that some other time. For now, the morning (and a long, hot shower) after his last transformation, Joesph Prince in stuffing himself with pancakes at the downtown LA IHOP, cursing the unknown little sh*t who did this to him between mouthfuls of iced tea and maple bacon.
June 04, 2018 06:52 pm

Quinn Abernathy

"I'll have...chocolate chip pancakes, please."

It had been some time since Quinn had sat down in a restaurant. Once, she had gone out into the open often. She lived in the City, waitressing, taking photographs, going out with friends. She had a dog, and a studio apartment. But her entire life changed when she took a bus out to some sleepy, country town. Quinn had walked out into the unknown, and Fate dealt her hand when a handsome young man almost hit her as he drove down the road. Her camera had been smashed. He was understandably upset with her for being so careless.

They went to the market, and he let her stay the night. Shortly after, she found a home and new friends nearby. He had been part of it, and the rest is history.. for a time.

Things went south. Quinn hit her lowest low, and they lost each other through a series of violet events. She would have lost her life, if not for that last shred of will she found to live. And she ran. But it still hurt, and she found herself in a new city, New Orleans.

"Is it possible to have chili powder mixed in, as well?"

The waitress gives her an odd look, and Quinn squirms in her seat. "It.. I like spicy food."

A raised eyebrow, and the request is jotted down.

In New Orleans, she made a new friend, and found a home. In that home, she reconnected with someone she knew from the city. It was kismet. Slow at first, the two soon became unseparable. The more she learned about him, the fonder she grew. And where he saw only a monster in himself, she found grace and goodness.

But the past would always follow, coming back to haunt it's victim. And so, they both found themselves as such. So much so, that they were taken into his past. A cult, cruel and frightening. Survival was key, and so they adapated and remained.

"And um... bacon. And a side of hashbrowns. And do you have hot sauce?"

They married there. They came into their own, and began to lead. While her husband flourished, she often floundered. Lies were told, and more lies. Anything to stay alive. Anything to preserve themselves until they would be able to escape. But she knew there would never be escape.

Quinn just needed that hope.

Something happened, and Gideon left her to find a new home. She still does not know what that something is. All she knows is the single important detail: her husband has been compromised. So of course, she would go with him. She would follow him to the ends of the Earth and beyond.

That is how she found herself in Los Angeles. Her husband, at their new home with the rest of their people. And her, in an IHOP, having once again strayed from their market of fresh fruits and vegetables, driven by food. Rather, driven by the now sixteen week old life growing in her belly.

Chocolate hues watch her waitress walk away, and she takes a breath, breathing in the rich scents of the savory pancake house. A clink of ice against glass catches her attention, but she pays it no mind. Angry mutterings catch her attention, though still she pays it no mind. What does catch her attention is the mouthwatering maple bacon coming from the very same booth.

That same set of earthly eyes would fall upon the man, and then his plate. She swallows against the instant desire to devour everything in sight.

Quinn doesn't even realize that she is staring.
June 07, 2018 03:28 pm
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