Dresden Files: Venice
Voices from the Abyss
!! Voices from the Abyss
!!! Part One
Vincenti di Venitzio is dispatched by Don Joseph Tormelli to meet with the ladies of La Belle D’Venice at Ca’Sagredo as he has been assigned as their new managing accountant. Arriving, he is met at the door to the suite by Cossette who is wearing no more than expensive lingerie, high heels and a smile. She invites him in, and asks if he likes what he sees. Over the following ten minutes or so, Isabel, Rachelle Lenco and Thomisina Teodori arrive, all immaculately dressed. Cossette emerges from the bedroom (now wearing a cocktail dress) and the group gather around the table to start the meeting. Vincenti di Venitzio tries to find out about their accounting and billing procedures, and finds out that Isabel, Cossette and Rachelle Lenco all state they they are paid in cash, jewelry, or expensive clothing and keep no real records. Cossette present a bag of cash and jewelry she does not care for, Rachelle Lenco several large bundles of notes, and Isabel a small purse of uncut diamonds (she got from her Jewish friend). The three girls have mobile phones but seem to use them for little other than the basics, (Cossette says hers was given to her by the nice man in the shop and she does not know how it is paid for). In contrast Thomisina Teodori has an advanced Iphone and sends Vincenti di Venitzio a copy of her accounts (apparently she has a degree in computing). She seems to be the only one with an apartment and ‘real life’ outside of her job, although she admits to rarely using it. During the conversation Isabel claims to have been working in Venice since the 16th century, and Cossette since the 19th. Vincenti di Venitzio outlines the new system he would like to introduce, with credit cards, shop accounts and on-line calendars.Having been typing on her phone for several minutes, Rachelle Lenco mentions she has a dinner appointment tonight and will need to go soon, whilst Cossette also claims to be hungry. In response to Vincenti di Venitzio‘s apparent incomprehension, she sashays around and sits up onto the table in front of him, within seconds he finds himself ’’Distracted’’ (minor social consequence). Isabel tells her to stop teasing him, and the meeting draws to a close, with only a few ‘one on ones’ promised for the near future.
Vincenti di Venitzio leaves the suite, but in the corridor, he pauses as he thinks he hears a voice. Curious he uses the Sight and sees a whirling mass of darkness, which he suspects is some of view beyond reality. He closes his vision from the strain, and ducks back into the suite. Cossette and Rachelle Lenco are apparently engaged in swapping clothes! When he explains what he has seen Rachelle Lenco phones Dolores Alegra Malspina to tell her, and she also sends a picture of the corridor to Gina Tortellis laptop. Slightly bored after a quiet day in the shop Dolores Alegra Malspina and Gina Tortelli head out to Ca’Sagredo to check on the situation, leaving Nina Da Costa and Claudia De Tisi Mortinengo to look after the Ponte Antico shop As they step outside they phone Luca Porrini and ask him to meet them there. It is currently about 5-30pm, and Svetlana Korai and Masquerade have a show tonight on the ‘Crystal Sunrise’ liner which is in the harbour at the moment. However, it is not a problem as Celia Barbi says she will stay at the apartment and look after the babies.
Luca Porrini, Dolores Alegra Malspina and Gina Tortelli head to Ca Sagredo on foot. They enter the hotel and head upstairs, with barely a nod from Dolores to the receptionist. Heading into the first floor corridor they encounter Rachelle Lenco on the way out, wearing an elegant evening gown. Exchanging greetings they continue on and at this point Dolores Alegra Malspina thinks she hears subtle muttering. Knocking at the suite door it is opened by Thomisina Teodori, who invites them in. Cossette introduces everyone, and discussions occur about unpaid invoices to Malspinas masks, and the swirling darknesses in the corridor. Dolores Alegra Malspina goes into the corridor, and stares into the swirling blackness using the Sight. In the swirling darkness, she believes she she spots ‘lights’; which may, she believes, be the souls of those consigned to non-existence by Derkovac?. However the strain starts to tell and she closes her sight, (2 stress). Discussions then take place about what to do with the information, and during this Cossette (who seems to be enjoying causing consternation for everyone) asks who in the room is fully human, only Thomisina Teodori answers in the positive. With the conversation drifting to partys Cossette mentions Fabrini Giacanti is holding a ball soon and that at present Rachelle Lenco has an invitation. During the meeting, Thomisina Teodori keep offering wine, but only Dolores Alegra Malspina keeps accepting.
Across the city, the last classes of the day are emptying out at Venice university. Marina Canalis sees Letzia Salvail goes up to talk to three girls, one of whom has waist length white hair, and to Marina Canalis’s eyes, looks terrified. She then see Letzia Salvail push back the girls sleeve and checks something on the girls arm. The four girls then head off through the city, with Marina Canalis tailing them at a discrete distance. After a quarter mile or so, they head into a small square and up to a first floor apartment, which one opens to let them in. Marina Canalis creeps up to the door and notes thaname on the bell ‘E. Raimondi’. Wanting to find out more, Marina takes a wander around the area to see what she can find. She hears a faint voice, singing on the wind, and strains to hear more…….
Gina Tortelli, Dolores Alegra Malspina, Luca Porrini and Vincenti di Venitzio head back at the Ponte Antico shop. After discussing the situation at Ca’Sagredo they group decide to go to the Dark Cross nightclub to try and find the Shadow Sisters to see what they know about Donella and Derkovac?. Claudia de Tisi Mortinengo is keen to show off a mask has made (to a high standard) with which Dolores Alegra Malspina suspects she had help. Claudia de Tisi Mortinengo also claims to be able to hear singing in a language she does not understand (and neither do Dolores Alegra Malspina or Vincenti di Venitzio). It is whilst doing this that Vincenti di Venitzio realises he can hear talking, and after some hesitation, Dolores Alegra Malspina takes him into the back of the shop to meet the rest of the Malspina family….. The ancestors in their masks seem slightly reticent to talk to the new comer, although Catterina Malspina-Bergamasco fails, just, to subtly take control of Vincenti di Venitzio’s body! Lorenzo Malspina admits to help in Claudia de Tisi Mortinengo to make the mask, in exchange for a favour, where she let him experience, something. Due to the heckling they are receiving, Dolores Alegra Malspina and Vincenti di Venitzio are forced to head outside for a private conversation.
Having changed, (and ensuring that Celia Barbi is ok to watch the babies) Dolores Alegra Malspina, Gina Tortelli, Luca Porrini and Vincenti di Venitzio head out to the Dark Cross nightclub. As they approach the area Luca Porrini can hear singing, and looking up he sees a woman standing on a nearby rooftop, singing. Luca Porrini changes into his Sphinx form and flies up to rescue her. He brings her safely down to ground level, at which point Marina Canalis looks confused, and cannot remember how she got up there. Vincenti di Venitzio uses the Sight to determine she is an ethereal figure spiralling in blue and gold, a mermaid.
Luca Porrini and Vincenti di Venitzio accompany Dolores Alegra Malspina, Gina Tortelli and Marina Canalis to the Dark Cross nightclub. There the Doorman nods to them in recognition and allows them straight in, whilst the new Doorwoman (tall elegant and dressed in black) eyes them with undisguised curiosity. Once inside they get drinks and settle into a booth, and whilst doing so notice Xaviera Giansante at the bar with a young woman. Marina Canalis and Gina Tortelli head out to dance, and from the floor Gina Tortelli can see Orabella and a top hatted man watching from the balcony. As the group continue with their drinks and observe the crowd, two ‘Cat Girls’ come in and head to the bar. Vincenti di Venitzio tries to lip read the conversation between them and the barman, but is unsure of the exact details, Luca Porrini thinks there is some concern. Orabella descends the stairs and heads to the bar, to intervene in the discussion. Meantime Xaviera Giansante heads over to Marina Canalis and offers her a drink, she accepts and after draining a considerable portion of it determines it is distilled fairy! He indicates that she should make formal introductions and offers to arrange it, but says nothing further. At the bar Orabella seems to negotiate something with the Cat Girls and points at Luca Porrini. Lucia Tortelli bumps into Gina Tortelli on the dance floor and returns to the others at the booth with her. Lucia Tortelli seems to hit on Vincenti di Venitzio and invites him to dance the charleston with her. With the club filling up Letizia da Forli and fourShadow Sisters arrive (Vitorio Drago, Rossella Nicolosi, Letzia Salvail and Elena Raimondi). However this is not the Letizia that most of them remember, she is assured, poised and possesses of a mane of shockingly white hair! The Shadow Sisters are met by Carla Spina who descends from the balcony to meet them. Dolores Alegra Malspina and Gina Tortelli head over to talk to them. As soon as she sees Dolores Alegra Malspina, Letizia da Forli turns to her and in a somewhat threatening voice repeats “You left me with her” several times. Just as Dolores Alegra Malspina begins to get nervous, she smiles a very sinister smile “You left me with her, and I love it!” The women head together to the alcove the Shadow Sisters regularly occupy, and a conversation commences over the recent births and the presence in the city of Donella and Drekavac?. It quickly turns into a blame laying game between Carla Spina and Dolores Alegra Malspina, with both assuming the other is responsible for the problems.
Dolores Alegra Malspina finally despairs of the conversation with Carla Spina and heads away, back to the booth. Meantime Letizia da Forli heads over to a group of young men and immediately (if unsurprisingly) seems to be the centre of their attention, whilst the Cat Girls have settled down with a more mature man at a booth at the end of the club. Luca Porrini sidles over and tries to listen in; they seem not to be speaking Italian which leaves him stumped, but this close they do smell Feline. Xaviera Giansante intercepts Marina Canalis as she heads towards Letizia da Forli and her entourage, and leads her away, saying that the situation there will end badly. As the two share another shot from his bottle, Xaviera explains that apparently, someone did something to Letizia that exceeded what was allowed by tradition. Learning nothin by lurking further, Luca Porrini heads back to converse with Dolores Alegra Malspina and Gina Tortelli about the Cat Girls: Dolores knows nothing; Gina knows there are Feline shapeshifters, but the half form these two girls exhibir is unusual. Chatting to Lucia Tortelli, Vincenti di Venitzio suspects there is something odd about her but cannot initially determine exactly what it is. Thus he uses the sight and through it determines that time is moving backwards for her in relation to her personal energy. Rather concerned, he tells Gina Tortelli who says she will keep an eye on it. Marina Canalis finally moves away from Xaviera Giansante and heads over to the group of students when she realises Letizia da Forli has seemingly vanished. With a little flirting, she gets them to tell her that Letizia headed through a door in the wall which isn’t there. Frustrated, she stays to enjoy a drink with the guys, but finds it somewhat stressful (3pts) resisting their obvious chat up lines. It is at this point that Cossette phones Vincenti di Venitzio wanting to know if she can buy a yacht! After several exchanges it becomes apparent that she is on board it, as is the owner Richard Longston? and at least one other person who keeps giggling. The yacht is apparently about a mile and a half out into the lagoon. It’s at this point that Gina Tortelli notes that Lucia Tortellis eyes are now a vibrant green!
Concerned as to exactly what Cossette is doing Vincenti di Venitzio, Dolores Alegra Malspina and Luca Porrini head out to the lagoon to look for the yacht, apparently named the ‘The Fallen Angel’. They find it drifting at anchor, and Dolores Alegra Malspina uses the sight, finding it has energy flowing through it, though the experience leaves her minorly ‘Unnerved’ and moderately ‘Enraptured’.
After examining the vessel from a distance, the water taxi approaches, and both Vincenti di Venitzio and Dolores Alegra Malspina touch it, feeling a gentle summer warmth and smelling seafood. Luca Porrini can see a harbourside restaurant less than 75 yards away! Somewhat concerned Luca Porrini and Dolores Alegra Malspina climb aboard, Vincenti di Venitzio however falls in the water, and has to be helped aboard. So much for his mobile phone. On the rear deck is a tray with glasses, and an empty champagne bottle, whilst a dress lies discarded on the deck. Both Dolores Alegra Malspina and Vincenti di Venitzio think the design is decidedly pre-war, with Dolores Alegra Malspina postulating it may be french. Vincenti di Venitzio looks with the Sight towards the restaurant and perceives that he is inside a ritual circle; the effort leaves him with 2pts of mental stress and minerly Unnerved. Luca Porrini can hear a rasping breathing coming from inside the boat, and smells what he thinks is a mixture of iron and brimstone. Heading into the boats Salon, the group find three bodies and a ritual circle carefully engraved into the deck. Checking the bodies they find the man died of a neck injury, the first woman of a thigh injury which severed a major artery, whilst the second woman suffered a combination of wounds. All appear to have been placed in a ritual engraving on the floor. Still able to hear breathing Luca Porrini heads across and down the ladder. There is a fourth body at the bottom of the stairs, and he approaches to check on her, finding she is still alive. Whilst the others continue to examine the ritual circle, Luca Porinni? realises he recognises the woman, but cannot thik from where. He is worrying about this when he hears a voice whisper to him
Find a woman in the corridor, after some deliberations it appears she appears to resemble the Fallen Angel statue in the Guggenhiem museum.
4pts of social stress she reaches out a hand, Vincenti kisses it. He is minorly Enchanted. Luca heads to the cabin and meets Delilah, she speaks German to him and gives him three minutes to leave. Tugging match ensues and Vincenti ends up with a dislocated arm. Rush to the boat and push off. Burst of magic and they return to the lagoon.
Gina and Marina remain at the Dark Cross, failing to find Xaviera, Mariana heads over to Gina who is watching the tall man in the top hat talking to her sister Lucia. Determining that the conversation involving her sister is somewhat serious, Gina tries to sneak towards them to see what she can overhear. He tells her even though she cannot feel it it still exists and for one they can make an exception but two is too many. She whines but he tells her two is starting to cause an instability. He turns to Gina after Lucia storms off and asks did she hear everything, she says not she came in half way through, he says that is the way of mortals. Gina then heads off after Lucia. Marina watches the top hat man heading through the club, seamlessly avoiding everyone without seeming to try, she does not think he is fey. Gina tries to get sense out of Lucia but she is not talking, other than saying who does he think he is and why not for her. The sisters head back to the booth for more wine and random discusions. Lucia answers that Xaviera will not be back tonight in response to Marina’s rhetorical question. The three head off to Lucas apartment to collect the baby.
Meanwhile Dolores Alegra Malspina, Vincenti di Venitzio and Luca Porinni? board the Fallen Angel. Discussing France in the 1940s they are confronted by Cossette with a bottle of wine a pair of heels and a smile. She asks again if they can buy it, Vincenti di Venitzio is against it. There is a certain amount of discussion about the tax deductability of the boat and after an initial misunderstanding they are led to realise Thomasina? is busy with Richard. Luca Porinni? finds his glass continually topped up by Cosstte?. They retire to the lounge where Vincenti di Venitzio uses the Sight on the boat and notes a web of energy. Dolores peers much deeper and see the web, created by layer upon layer of summoning and binding spells, and deep within it, the essence of the caster, Chantel Dubois?.
Dolores realises that Cossette feels awkward having butchered her previously. Luca gets a text message from Iacoma de Rossi asking if he is free. He declines to go that evening, stating he is too drunk, but arranges to see here the following night at work. Svetlana also texts him asking him if he is coming home. Cossette nags about the boat and Vincenti finally gives in about the purchase, but does keep reminding them about the boats history. Eventually they depart and drop Dolores off at the shop.
There Claudia de Tisi Mortinengo is knitting, and Mr Tiddles is watching, she enquires about the evening and Dolores explains what has transpired. She points out the invitation for Dolores to the Giacanti ball in two nights time. Dolores hits bed.
At luca’s he meets Gina and finds both Celia Barbi and Adrianna Contarinni. Gina takes her baby home. Svetlana has insisted Celia stays the night, and Adrianna seems to have moved in.
Dolores opens the shop, Nina is of course present, business is initially slow. Vincenti is here to do the books, he is impressed with Ledgers! Discussions turn to dresses, which serves to confuse Vincenti. Not impressed with pizza, Nina puts the kettle back on and insists on cake. On the way to cake Nina stops and says there is someone outside. It is a small oriental woman in black silk trousers and a corset. After failing to communicate with Dolores she is introduced to Gina, to whom she announces the entry to the city of her mistress, the ‘Scarlet Empress of the Seven Jewelled Spiders’ having done so she departs. Gina collects dresses from her realm to show to Dolores for her ball. Vincenti discovers the ledgers are diaries, codes, and general bitching, as well as records of transactions. Thomisina texts if the boat is bought yet.
Marina heads to classed on the lookout for Letzia, she spots her being hustled along to a class by a couple of the Shadow Sisters. She phones Gina to tell her. Gina texts back and invites her over for lunch.
Dolores goes to Luca’s to asks Svetlana if she can borrow Luca for Fabrini Giacantis ball. Adrianna is looking for her costume (blue). Svetlana wants something themed for a new burlesque show on the Crystal cruise lines.
Marina arrives for lunch and is introduced to Nina, who is brought up to date on last night’s events. She in turn asks what they are going to do with Gina’s dads mistress Dianna de Cordoba who is the glass coffin. Nina points out she has been attacked at least four times. Vincenti goes to see Diana de Cordoba and determines she is far too young for her suspected age. After discussions Vincenti wishes he knew what was wrong with Dianna, Gina pulls out her sunglasses, makes preparations, invokes your wish is my command and slices her palm for several drops of blood and bound to the sum of knowledge (Minor Physical: sliced hand). She cannot spot anything wrong with Diana but the coffin has transmuted her into something more than human, closer to a Fey of some form.
Disturbed by Vincenti’s lack of concern, No=ina takes Vincenti into the nextt store room to see the Rachelle statue and he looks at it, taking two points of mental stress and realising it was grown of living stone.