Jan 18, 2021 8:19 AM
season two: in which the council notices our heroes
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" - what does that even - that's not the point."

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"The point is that he is very likely much more dangerous than you assume. If you insist on continuing to associate with this 'Alex Johnson', which I assure you is almost certainly not his real name, then as your watcher I insist on meeting him and determining what manner of fiend he is. If, as you believe, his motives are aligned with ours, then there should be no problem, now, should there."

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Wyndam-Pryce has mastered the art of asking questions of high school students. He wants to meet you. Also he says you're a demon. Also that so are raccoons.

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He knows where to find me. Or do you want me to drop by? And I dunno about raccoons, there're some in Valinor, I wouldn't expect them to go in for animals that are even a little bit demon. I guess the ones in Valinor are different, these ones could be a bit more crossbred.

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He did specify modern raccoons. We should have more words than 'demon' for things, 'demon' is doing way too many jobs right now.

- but no, don't bother.

"You can go see him whenever, it's a free country. We had a war about it."

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"You want me to approach an unknown and possibly quite dangerous agent of evil alone and unarmed?"

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"...fine. I'll go with you, but partly because if I weren't hanging out with you I would be going that way anyway."

I guess we're coming to you. He can't go on his own time 'cause you're evil and dangerous.

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Of course, I forgot.

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We're onto your nefarious plans.

- do keep an extra eye on Zeke while he's in town, though, OK? I dunno how they feel about non-practicing evil, but I'm not optimistic.

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You got it.

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Thanks.

"So this is the gym," says Karen, very unnecessarily, when they get there. "Mostly we do self-defense drills here, but sometimes we do basketball, because it's in the state curriculum and we are often law-abiding citizens."

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"You would do well to take this more seriously." 

He approaches Alex, cautiously, making an effort to stay behind Karen. "Hello. I understand that you are aware of Karen's true nature."

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"Oh, hey! Yeah, I've known her for a year. Smart, hardworking, cautious, protective, I've met worse people in better worlds."

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(Aww.)

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"I see. Then you knew her long before she became the Slayer."

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"I started here last fall."

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"I suppose that does make you moderately less suspicious compared to the scenario in which you only appeared on the scene last week. - what are you?"

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"No comment. We don't bite. I spent the last year making this city safer and teaching the kids to defend themselves, and I'm going to keep doing that this year."

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"So you say. I suppose I should thank you for briefly looking after the Slayer during the time it took us to determine her location. Nevertheless, your services will no longer be necessary; Karen will train with me going forward."

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Karen laughs.

" - sorry."

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"With all due respect, what exactly are you expecting you can teach her?"

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"She will continue to study hand-to-hand combat, assuming that's what you've been doing, as well as ranged combat and techniques developed specifically to defeat vampires and the more dangerous and deadly demon species common to this region. She will also study demonology and defenses against the mystical arts, among other things that I expect to be quite beyond a public school gym teacher. You may have taught her to cheat, but I intend to teach her to succeed even when she can't."

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"Do you want to know what we covered so you know where to start?"

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"If it would make you feel better."

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"All right. She can hit a moving target with a crossbow at about 80 meters, and with a longbow at a hundred eighty meters; she has stakes balanced and weighted for throwing and is reliable with those up to about 30 meters. She has practice with hand-to-hand combat, hand-to-hand combat with a knife, and hand-to-hand combat unarmed with an armed opponent, though obviously she should never get herself into a situation where an enemy is within ten meters of her, and she very rarely has. We've obtained a waiver exempting her from the California law prohibiting accompanied minors from carrying a gun at a shooting range, and she's mostly been practicing with U.S. military hardware because that's what I have access to. She's logged a couple hundred hours each with the M4 carbine -- standard-issue assault rifle, semi-automatic but there's an automatic that handles nearly the same -- the M107 semi-automatic long range sniper rifle, range is around 2,000 meters, the only place in the state you can practice with it is about fifty miles west of here at Fort Irwin -- and with a rifle-mounted laser used by the U.S. military to alert civilians that they're entering a combat zone. She has experience safely using smoke grenades and tear gas grenades and we've done three days of practice with explosive grenades. She can swim, she can navigate the woods at night, she can climb, she can fight blindfolded, she can recognize the couple hundred demon species that collectively make up 99.9% of all sightings in this part of the world, she can track things pretty adequately, she can administer first aid. 

Priorities for the next couple months are teaching her to drive, teaching her to hotwire a car, teaching her a wider variety of nonlethal weapons -- there're people working to develop a taser for demons that I'm potentially interested in -- getting more into the space of magical rituals permissible under her Catholic obligations, and skydiving because it's fun and decent practice at risk management under pressure. I was gonna ask her whether she's interested in learning some vocabulary for deescalation in a couple hundred nonhuman languages; if so, we might try that."

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