Session 2, Part 4
The party’s in full swing and — despite the presence of Vampyres — quite lively. A band is playing Polly Wolly Doodle (All The Day) while dozens of Vampyres and well-to-do humans intermingle. The Vampyres sip chilled blood from champagne flutes while the humans drink actual champagne. It all seems very congenial. The Triad blend in as well as possible — which, considering how often you see a set of identical triplets, isn’t well at all!
At the conclusion of the band’s tune, the Triad spots a pale, young-looking, well-dressed gentleman raising his glass. He taps it with a silver spoon and the party guests fall silent. It’s the Vampyre Viceroy, Elbridge Gerry. Joking with the crowd like a seasoned politician, he launches into an impromptu speech espousing the virtues of his new fiancée. He then introduces her: Liliana Avram. The guests all clap as Lily walks out wearing a gorgeous red dress. The Viceroy signals the band, and a slow waltz starts up. Elbridge and Lily dance alone on the balcony under the bright autumn moon. It would be very romantic if Lily didn’t look so completely miserable.
After the dance they manage to catch Lily alone. She’s shocked to see them and tells them to return to Manhattan. Viceroy Gerry has been after her hand in marriage for years. Time after time, Lily turned him down because he represents everything she finds distasteful in her fellow Vampyres. Eventually Gerry let her be, but recently he became the overseer of the U.S.‘s Northeastern Demesne. Somehow he knew Lily was traveling to Suffolk County and blocked the road. He “invited” her to his home for dinner and told her he’d heard of the Triad’s troubles with the Sheriff. If Lily accepted his proposal of marriage he would make it go away, or, if she did not, he would make it much worse. She didn’t have any choice but to accept.
Lily hurries back to the party before she’s missed. The Triad remains in the hall to discuss what happens next. It doesn’t take long before they decide this is all very unacceptable. They march up the stairs and across the large balcony to stand before the Viceroy. They introduce themselves as the Triad and tell him they have serious business to discuss. Lily is shocked. Gerry seems amused, and tells his guests to continue the party while he adjourns to his office with his uninvited guests.
The Triad follows Viceroy Gerry downstairs. Two Vampyre guards trail behind them. Lily – who’s having a hell of a time moving in her tight red dress – follows, quietly demanding that Mr. Onyx tell her what they have up their sleeves. Mr. Onyx asks her to trust them. After all, she rescued them once before, and this is their chance to return the favor. Of course, they haven’t formulated any sort of plan.
“Once!? I rescued you a million times! You only remember it once.” – Lily
Viceroy Gerry’s private chambers are obnoxiously reminiscent of a medieval throne room. He even has a high-backed chair that looks suspiciously like a throne. He sits in it, and his two brutish guards flank him.
Right away, he takes pain makes one thing very clear: He isn’t responsible for what happened to them in Suffolk County, though he’s interested in finding out who is. After all, it happened in his territory. Those few Vampyres who know about the Triad have wanted to “dispense” with them for years. They’re seen as an uncontrollable element (which this little encounter seems to prove true). After their interference with the “blood brothel” in Manhattan their notoriety among local Vampyre tribes increased.
“I lured you gentlemen into my web. I’m no spider, though. I won’t suck you dry. Provided, of course, you make the wise choice.” – Viceroy Elbridge Gerry
This is not healthy. That said, the Viceroy isn’t among those who wants to harm them. He believes they have mutual goals.
The Viceroy expected them to come to Lily‘s rescue. In fact, the party was a ruse to lure them into his home. It’s not enough to have Lily; he wants them, as well. He has sway over the police, and he can make their lives either easy or unbearable. He can also help the Triad find who ever is responsible for their condition and extract revenge. All they need do is swear allegiance to him. He holds out his hand. Around his middle finger is an ancient bronze ring with a jeweled death’s head. The Viceroy wants them to kiss it and become his subjects, protected by him, but also at his beck and call.
After hearing this, Messrs. Verde, Onyx, and Azure exchange meaningful glances. Mr. Onyx goes to bow — then quick-draws his hidden silver-edged sword and beheads the guard on the Viceroy’s left. He turns to puddle of black, tarry mess. Onyx immediately turns the blade and slices at the Viceroy’s neck, lodging the edge in his spine.
Mr. Azure draws his revolver, but the other guard is preternaturally fast and kicks it from his hand. The Vampyre guard and Mr. Azure brawl as Mr. Verde steps back and summons his inner strength, bending his will on the fire in Viceroy’s hearth.
Viceroy Gerry, momentarily stunned by the sudden violence, howls in rage and pain and tears the blade out of Onyx’s fingers. He then slice’s at Mr. Onyx’s, slicing his leg with his own sword. Mr. Verde uses thaumatology to send the fire in the hearth the guard immediately erupts in flames, and quickly turns disintegrates.
Lily jumps on the Viceroy’s back, clawing at his face. He throws her off, but this distracts him long enough for Mr. Onyx to line up a perfect stab with his hidden wooden stake. Like his guards, Viceroy Elbridge Gerry‘s body turns to black goo. His ring falls onto the floor, which Mr. Azure snatches up. It’s warm to the touch.
There’s no time to congratulate one another. It sounds like a whole army of Vampyres are trying to break into the study. Worse still, Mr. Verde’s fire is starting to spread! Thinking quickly, they throw the Viceroy’s throne through the window. It’s a twenty foot drop to the ground, but they have no other choice. They jump!
Lily, Mr. Onyx, and Mr. Azure land without much damage. Mr. Verde, however, isn’t as lucky. He falls on his arm, breaking it with an audible snap. Almost immediately they’re surrounded by armed guards. Above them, the Vampyres break into the study and find the dead Viceroy. Things are looking very grave. Thinking quickly, Lily whispers to Mr. Onyx to take her hostage, hoping the guards don’t know her involvement. He puts the sword to her throat and the guards back off. The Triad and Lily retreat to the forest.
As they leave, screams erupt from inside the mansion. It sounds like the Vampyres are slaughtering all the humans! Coming upon the wrecked velocipede, Lily is incensed. She thinks she can fix it, but it will take at least twenty minutes. She opens her spare tool case on the back of the velocipede, tears her dress in half, and starts working!
“An ancient practice. No human may witness a dead Vampyre and live. God, I hate them.” – Lily
Luckily, Mr. Verde uses his talents to set the forest ablaze. It becomes a conflagration, successfully stopping any pursuit — for now. With the velocipede (hastily) repaired, they speed home to New York City, and to an uncertain (and likely short-lived) future.