Recently Amanda had a conversation with Midnight about what strange things she was investigating. Amanda told her about the black-eyed children that would visit houses and, if let in, bad things would happen. Midnight broadcast the story on her show and she got a caller that said the same thing happened to her that very night. Midnight gave Amanda the address and now a pair of Hunters are in that house to see what will happen.
The resident is one Janine Cartwright, 25, single mother. The house is one of many dumps along this street in Pigeon Hill. The kind where there is just as much furniture in the front yard as there is in the house. The woman sits on the couch in her lounge, bouncing her baby on her lap as she watches Amanda and Angry. "So it's some kind of demon thing, right? That's what they are? I knew the rent was too cheap. Probably built on an Indian burial ground. Is it? Is the house built on an Indian burial ground?"
Picking his teeth at the kitchen table is Bolgar...though he wears a hat to cover his head. "Nope!" he calls out to the woman. "No Indian burial ground. Pakistani one." He laughs at his own joke, giving Angry a wink and Amanda a leer. But he's here to help!
Amanda has her usual bag of anti-spoopy as she looks round the lounge and out the window. "Could be kids with those fancy all-eye lenses, looking to spook people out for laughs," she offers to Janine. "Don't know about where burial grounds are, though."
“Burial ground?" Angry wonders, looking around the house, "Not really. More like 'let’s invite strange children into the house' deal, you know?" he looks to Amanda, "Yeah. Criminality among young people is just creeping down the ages. Wouldn't surprise me if they were looking for something to take and sell."
"So they're just thieves?" That has Janine rather disappointed. "But the woman on the radio said they could be ghosts or something. And that would be worth money, right? People would want to make a movie and shit." A big grin on her face at the idea before she stands. "I'm gonna put the baby to bed." A glance at the clock. "They shouldn't be too long. I'll stay with the baby if that's okay." With that she heads off to the rear bedroom.
Bolgar watches her leave before letting out a sigh and removing his hat to rub at his horns. "Thank the Devil she's gone. It was getting hot under this hat. Hey, Angry, where's Jo?" A yawn from the demon before he sets about raiding the fridge for beer. "Anyone want anything?"
"Sorry," Amanda says to Janine. "You could always make something up. Y'know, "Demons ate my baby, so I became a demon killer," that sort of thing," she offers. After Janine leaves the room, to Bolgar she snarkily says, "Yeah, but we can't have you leave in case something happens."
"She's not gone, just .. in the other room." Angry reminds Bolgar, just ignoring the other question that the Demon asks. He looks to Amanda, "So, what is the plan here?" he wonders, "Naturally, if something physically shows up I'll punch it in the face but other than that?" he wonders, looking around, "I swear, if there are floating furniture I will punch a wall."
"You'd miss me, Sweetie" Bolgar winks to Amanda as he opens up a beer. He takes a swig before deciding to put his hat back on just in case. "There's no spirits here" he notes before his brow furrows. "Don't think so..."
And then there is a knock on the door.
And then the voices of two children speaking in unison. "Please let us in."
"Yeah, can I ask who this is please?" Amanda says, walking towards the door. "I ordered a large sausage pizza and we're waiting for the pizza delivery guy, but you don't sound like them," she says.
"Also, you're five minutes late! We're not paying for the bloody pizza!" Angry shouts out as well, as if trying to add to the illusion that.. well.. to the joke that.. well. To the thing that Amanda says about the Pizza. Yep. He moves closer to the door though, muttering, "Good thing I brought my shotgun.." He moves to the bag he brought. While Amanda has her stuff, he has his stuff. Which.. is a shotgun.
"We ordered pizza? Cool" grins Bolgar before enjoying some more of his beer. "No anchovies though. God knows why God made those buggers." At least he didn't draw attention to Amanda's desire for a large sausage.
"You have to let us in" say the voices at the door before there is another knock. "Please, let us in."
"What do we get out of it?" Amanda ask. "You don't have a pizza, you haven't mentioned Tindr....Are you two selling Jesus? Because he's not here and can't come out to play."
"If you are from Jehovah's Witnesses, then we aren't interested! I am Catholic!" Angry calls back, "So sell your Watchtower somewhere else." he opens the bag up and takes out the shotgun. He looks at it, then looks to Amanda and the door.
Another knock on the door. "We must come in" they explain though it seems they're not good at reacting to questions. "Before it is too late" they finally add.
Bolgar appears from the kitchen to peer around at the Hunters at work. "You letting them in or not?"
"Too late? Is it time for your curfew?" Amanda asks, pulling a water pistol full of holy water out of her bag. She looks to Angry and mouths, "Want me to open the door?"
Angry shrugs once at that, "I have no idea. I am not the demonic child expert." he looks to Bolgar, then to Amanda. He then lifts his shotgun up, "I am ready though, with unending rounds of ammunition. If that will even help. No clue what these things are about."
"We will be back tomorrow. You must let us in." And then silence from outside the door.
Bolgar wanders over, frowning at Amanda as he gently points her Holy Water pistol to one inside. "Don't look at me" he replies to Angry. "We don't even know if they were demons." A pause. "So when did you order the pizza?"
Once the silence starts, Amanda opens the door a little, then peers out. At Bolgar's question, she says, "Here in the land of Mortals, we have this thing called 'humour'."
"Some humour is better the other humour." Angry notes, "There is also sarcasm and irony." he moves closer to the door as well as Amanda begins to open it, his shotgun held at the ready; you can never be too careful when it comes to supernatural things, "I wonder if they truly left.. and if so, how. Do you see anything?"
There is no one on the step outside. The street is quiet and the sky is clear. There is line of sight for quite some distance down both directions but there is no sing of travellers. Nobody scurrying for cover. No giggling children at having deceived the old folk. Deathly quiet.
Amanda exits the house, water gun at the ready. She looks round in case the kids pops out of nowhere. "See anything?" she asks the others.
Angry shakes his head, moving over to a window to peer outside, "I see.. nothing." he says, "Just the street and the yard." he hms, "Well, this is peculiar. Not to mention a bit terrifying. Makes me wonder what they are here for. A house with a single mother and a child? Has some bad implications to it."
There is still no sign of the children...or whatever it was that spoke to them through that door. Bolgar isn't going anywhere. He stops at the open door and calls out to Amanda. "Come in. We wouldn't want you getting a chest cold." He grins at Angry. "Am I right?"
Amanda reenters the house, closing the door behind her. "A mother and a /baby/," she says. "Maybe they're recruiting, or looking for kids to indoctrinate or mutate." She rolls her eyes at Bolgar. "Why are you leering over a Mortal woman? Succubuses won’t look at you twice?" she snarks to Bolgar.
Angry lets out a laughter to that, nodding once, "She got you there." he tells Bolgar, shaking his head a bit. He then nods once to Amanda, "Or.. they are just hungry." he adds, "Either way, they are gone but they will return.. and we can't let them."
"Sheesh...I try to be nice to people and all I get is attitude" Bolgar pouts before meandering back to the kitchen. "So we'll be back tomorrow night then? Maybe let them in this time? Hey...can I get a gun before then?"
Janine Cartwright had called in Amanda and Angry because she was being bothered by Black Eyed Kids who would knock on the door and demand to be let in. If they weren't...something bad would happen. A & A were there the second night. The children demanded entrance three times before they disappeared into the night. The third night is when something really bad is supposed to happen. Tonight. Bolgar has been left at 'home' for this evening though Aurore has been brought along. Janine and her child are spending the night with relatives. So now it is up to AAA to sort this out.
Amanda's got her usual bag of anti-spoop stuff with her, as well as a mug of coffee she brought from home. Looking at the others she asks, "So any idea what this bad thing is going to be?"
Kids with black eyes are not natural and for this reason alone, Angry has decided to bring along his trusty shotgun. Y'know, the one that just never runs out of ammunition. He's looking ready for action, his senses on alert, "Well, I have no clue but.. if it decides to mess with us, I'm standing ready to mess back."
"*Any* ideas? Hah." Amanda receives a decidedly amused look from Aurore, before the native shrugs ruefully. "The rule of three might well hint at something to do with fae, of some sort. Something perhaps enhanced by the role of children in this. But at root, they're inhuman entities operating according to seemingly-strict rules, in pursuit of specific goals. That would fit with a range of things, particularly of the ephemeral kind."
There is a knock at the door. The plaintive voices of two children in unison - one boy, one girl. "Please let us in."
Amanda sighs and quietly says, "Show time." She moves to the door, then looks to see if Angry's in position with his shotgun. "Shall I open it?" she mouths to the others.
"Well, the question is what will happen if we do not let them in versus if we do." Angry says, moving so that he can cover the door with the shotgun, "Will they be worse if they come in, or worse if they aren't allowed?" he pauses, "Decisions, decisions.."
"Well, it's a rather *direct* mode of test... but you could open the door and see if they step in of their own accord. Then invite them in if they don't?", Aurore suggests. "If they breach my ward - or otherwise react to it - that gives us some information. Not necessarily of a good kind, of course..."
Amanda nods then opens the door, before taking several steps back and joining the others.
Angry just nods once to this, not really giving his voice to the plan but when the door opens he props the shotgun up against this shoulder and takes aim.
Two children stand there in the doorway. They can't be more than twelve years old. Their faces hidden beneath pulled up hoods "Thank you" they say as one before stepping forward...and stopping straightaway. Their feet hanging in the air. "Please let us inside. If you don't let us inside, something bad will happen."
Amanda looks to the others, as if to ask if they should invite them now. "What'll happen?" she asks the kids.
Aurore nods encouragingly, opting to remain silent for the moment - direct questioning from a single source often the best way to go, with inhuman entities that want something.
Angry raises his eyebrows to this, as the kid warns them something bad will happen; especially with him having his shotgun trained at them. He lets out a breath, steadying himself, even shifting his body a bit to the side to be sure he's got a clear line of sight.
Aurore's ward seems to be having an effect. The children seemingly suspended in mid-step, unable to advance. "You have to let us in, please. Or something bad will happen." They pull down their hoods to reveal pale faces and black pits where their eyes should be. "Now" they plead.
Following Aurore's nod, Amanda says, "You can come in, kids. We invite you in." She isn't sure of what's needed to be said, so goes a little overboard.
Angry takes another deep breath, his eyes locked to the two kids, "This should prove to be interesting." he mutters; they are unlike anything he has seen so far, and he has seen a lot of weird shit in a short amount of time, "Had to be kids, didn't it?" he mutters.
They fall under 'Black Eyed Kids' - the urban legend of the children who visit houses though no one seems certain why. Consensus is that they are Elemental creatures of some kind though there are plenty of supporters in the 'Demons' camp. There is no record of them being bothered by religious paraphernalia though. The Loyalists have pretty much the same information. The Kids appear, torment some family and then disappear...usually after the family is slaughtered. They'd love to see a connection.
Aurore remains silent, at least a little longer - watching intently to see how her warding holds up, and whether the black-eyed 'children' have *chosen* to stop, rather than pushing through something that will weaken them, or if they are not potent enough to force their way in at all.
Amanda stays with the others, though taking a step behind Angry so she isn't accidentally hit by any shooting. She slips a camera out of her bag and starts recording the kids.
The children are not pushing through the ward. Whether they don't have the strength to or it would be impolite to do so, is unclear. But Amanda did invite them in and they take a slow step inside...as if walking through molasses.
Then the house starts to shake.
Angry glances to Aurore, "Your thing doing that?" he wonders as the house starts to shake, "What the hell are these things? Anyone have an idea? Don't want to start shooting to find out they are actual kids possessed by something."
"They're an anomaly," Aurore murmurs, voice dry as she watches them carefully. "A recurrent phenomenon... but it's unclear whether they *cause* the mayhem that tends to be found in the wake of their sightings, or if they're harbingers for something else. If we can possibly find out whether they're helpful or harmful in themselves, it would be useful. I don't know if we should be aspiring to free them or fight them. And yes: within the ward, they will be significantly weaker than outside it. Not necessarily powerless, but they will feel the reduction in their capabilities all the time they spend inside."
With the house shaking, Amanda reaches out with her free hand to grab a hold of Aurore. She keeps filming the kids, hoping this'll end soon.
The house is shaking so violently now that dust and plaster is raining down on the trio. Something is beneath them. A rumbling sound. Then a screeching sound. Strange markings start to burn into the wooden floor...from beneath it.
"Something bad is happening" deadpan the children as they wade through the ward, separating and moving to opposite ends of the design that is burning into the floor. The tangy smell of sulphur in the air.
This is certainly sufficiently worrying to at least come *close* to completely distracting Aurore from her occult nerdery... but not *quite*. Even as she hangs tightly onto Amanda, she frowns worriedly at the sigils appearing on the floor. "Well, the good news is that my wards help against demons," she says hoarsely. "I can try parleying with whatever comes through" - and she sounds like she means it - "but that might be a bit of a gamble. Better inside a ward than out, of course."
This is certainly sufficiently worrying to at least come *close* to completely distracting Aurore from her occult nerdery... but not *quite*. Even as she hangs tightly onto Amanda, and obeys Angry's instruction by edging closer to the nearest window, she frowns worriedly at the sigils appearing on the floor. "Well, the good news is that my wards help against demons," she says hoarsely. "I can try parleying with whatever comes through" - and she sounds like she means it - "but that might be a bit of a gamble. Better inside a ward than out, of course."
Amanda sticks with Aurore, holding onto her for both physical and emotional support. "I guess anything that doesn't result in us getting killed is a good idea," she offers.
The children, regardless of how difficult Aurore has made it for them, sit across from each other, black eyes staring into black eyes. They start to mumble. Strange, archaic words as the house continues to shake. The outside world through the window seems quite calm and serene in comparison.
The children speak faster and faster. The house shaking even worse as if in argument with the words. The burning of the floor starts to sputter and fizzle rather than sear. Black sweat pours from the children's faces like oil. Slowly the sigils on the floor start to disappear. The marking dissipating until they are all gone. The house is still. And the children sit in silence on the floor.
Watching what is happening, Angry just stares at the marking and the children seeming to be keeping whatever is down there from getting through, "Ok, will someone tell me what the fuck is going on here?" he wonders, "Are these .. freaky little gits actually helping us?"
"I.....guess?" Amanda hesitantly says. "Is everything ok over there?" she calls over to the kids.
"It certainly didn't seem like they were having much success at pulling anything through if that *is* what they were trying... and them helping does appear to fit rather better with what we've seen and heard," Aurore agrees shakily... not letting go of Amanda, and having a hard time pulling her gaze away from the floor, in case anything reappears there. "Whether I overall helped or hindered them with my Warding, I wouldn't like to say for sure."
"This is not good, though. We need to know what was trying to break free. There will be a day when they will fail and then whatever is there will come through." he looks to Aurore and then to Amanda, "Did you guys get that .. on the floor .. on film?" He wonders.
The children slowly get to their feet, the ward still slowing them down. "We are done here" they announce together. "The tear is sealed and now we go to the next." They start walking, slowly, for the door. "We only know it is about to open three days before it does. Most people never let us in. They die when the portal to Hell opens and no one knows why." They look, with their black eyes, at the trio of Hunters. "Good bye. We will see each other again."
Amanda keeps a hold of Aurore too. She nods at Angry's question, having recorded everything. She offers a wave as the kids leave.
"Ok, what the fuck.. Hell?" Angry wonders, looking then to his two compatriots when the kid leaves, "That ain't good. We have to find out what the fuck that is and stop it. Can't rely on these kids keeping people safe. People are dying.."
Aurore nods shakily, raising her free hand in rather uncertain farewell. "Wow," she croaks hoarsely. "Ahh, yes. I suspect we shall. Thank you. And... yeah, we do. But right now - thank you for helping." She inclines her head to the black-eyed children, watching them depart.